Hutchinson’s last brick-and-mortar video rental store will soon be gone.
Family Video announced Tuesday morning it is closing all of its more than 250 remaining stores, including Hutchinson’s store, which opened December 2007.
While movie rental businesses have struggled as online streaming options such as Netflix became more popular, the impact of the pandemic this past year was the final blow according to a press release from Keith Hoogland, CEO of Highland Ventures, the company that owns Family Video.
“Today, I have to make the difficult announcement that we are closing all Family Video locations,” the press release said. “The impact of COVID-19, not only in foot traffic but also in the lack of movie releases, pushed us to the end of an era.”
According to Hutchinson store manager Jessica Mateski, the store is scheduled to close by the end of February or sooner, depending on its liquidation sale. Until then, no rentals are permitted, but everything in the store is available for sale including all movies, games, fixtures and other products.
“So many of us have fond memories of video store visits as a child and as an adult. It is heartbreaking to think that our next generation will never have the opportunity to experience it,” Mateski said in a message. “Soon the video store will be just a distant memory like so many other things of our past.”
Mateski said the store still plans to host its final scheduled blood drive Tuesday, Feb. 2, and it received the American Red Cross Outstanding Service Award.
While Family Video will soon be closed, cinephiles still have a few local options for renting videos, including Hutchinson Public Library and Redbox kiosks at Walmart and Walgreens.