Special to Mustang News
Before there was Netflix or HBO or Hulu, there used to be a time where people would rent movies at video stores.
The times when a movie was chosen and it was agony to stand in line to check out the film while also checking out the popcorn and candy, knowing it would make a good night.
These days, it is rare to see a video store, and yet San Luis Obispo was one of the cities that held on to the traditional movie experience.
However, on June 30, Studio Video will be closing down after being in business for almost 26 years.
Brett Vanderlaan and Carlos Zaragosa, Studio Video employees, said the closing of the store tugs at their hearts.
Studio Video is managed by Kenny Kim, who took pride in being one of the last video stores in San Luis Obispo.
Many of the customers also have an attachment to the long-standing movie store, and it came as a shock to some when they saw the sign hanging in front of the store saying it was closing.
“We’ve had someone cry and some people are really upset about it,” Zaragosa said. “I was kind of shocked to see how upset some people were. Though many customers have been coming here since they were a little kid.”
Despite closing down after so many years, Kim will be “going out gracefully” and on his own terms. The shutdown is partially because business has been going down and he has had small issues with the landlord, but according to his two employees, Kim is still happy with his life.
Vanderlaan and Zaragosa both said they would miss their customers.
“There are some very, very cool people out there,” Vanderlaan said. “It’s really cool seeing and hearing what people do.”
Zaragosa is on first-name basis with many of the customers.
“I’ve seen some of the kids grow up. From being in a cradle to running around picking movies,” he said.
It’s going to be different seeing an empty space instead of the multiple movie posters sticking out the glass windows and the vast array of movies stacked on shelves.
“The times are changing,” Vanderlaan said.