This Video Rental Store in Louisiana May Be the Last of Its Kind
If you want a heavy dose of 90s nostalgia, I've got the road trip for you.
Remember when Friday nights were lit? You would walk into Blockbuster (or your local hometown mom & pop video rental store) and the entire world of entertainment was literally at your fingertips. From wall to wall, the shelves held the latest and greatest movies available for home viewing and if you were lucky, you would be able to grab the best titles before they were all rented out for the weekend.
If you forgot the feeling, here are 20 minutes of Blockbuster Video commercials to jog your memory.
Unfortunately, that feeling is nearly impossible to come by with streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon and the fact that we can get just about any movie at any time on demand.
But if you're a sucker for nostalgia like me, you may not mind taking a road trip to satisfy the 90s kid that still lives inside of you. There's a place in West Monroe by the name of National Video Superstore and they are one of the last video rental stores in the country.
Steve Chambliss says that in the heyday of the video rental store it took six employees manning the registers to keep up with the business. His family's store boasted 6,000 square feet of movie-themed decor with "wall-to-wall titles" and even video games if you were lucky.
Today, it's impossible to find a stand-alone video in America let alone our area, so the fact that we have this throwback treasure in Louisiana is pretty special. Chambliss believes they are the last one in the state.
I think we're the last one in Louisiana, but I can't be completely sure. My buddy says I should charge a museum fee.
Even though video rental stores only accounted for $250 million of the whopping record of $25.2 billion last year, Chambliss says his family has maintained a "viable, if not booming, business" thanks to special services they offer to customers like transferring old home movies to DVD and games that "attract younger customers."
You never know what's going to happen, but we're doing fine right now.
I will say, as an avid vinyl record collector, the old soul in me can totally relate to the satisfaction that comes with browsing through tangible media—so if I'm ever in the area I'll definitely try to stop by the National Video Superstore.