And then there was one.
One of just two video rental stores still doing business in Portland is calling it quits.
Impulse Video in Hillsdale will close its doors for good on the last day of June. That means Movie Madness on Southeast Belmont Street, which was recently taken over by the Hollywood Theater, is the city's last place to rent movies the old-fashioned way.
"I took over this store four and a half years ago because I didn't want it to close," said Impulse owner Karen Schnoll. "But times have changed. Business has slowed down and I'm going to close the business."
But before she does so, there are hundreds of DVDs available for purchase. A few days before the closing customers were arriving with lists of movies they'd like to own. Schnoll is selling new releases in standard DVD format for $8 and new release Blu Ray discs for $10. Movies that have been around for a while – classics, comedies, dramas, foreign movies – for $4 with the Blu Rays going for $5. The cost for television shows on DVD will vary.
"I just thought it would be a loss to the community if it closed in 2014," Schnoll said while looking up movies sought by bargain hunters. "With my family I've been renting here since 1996. It would have been too bad to close then. I still think it's too bad but it just needs to be done."
Believe it or not, she's not a huge movie buff even though she is surrounded by the greatest movies ever made.
"What I'll miss most is the social aspect. My customers are my people. It's a lot of emotional impact coming into this little place from customers who tell me they're so sad to see us go," she said.
"By the end of a ten-hour shift I'm just like, 'I can't take this any more,'" she said with a sad laugh.
"I'll most miss my little view from behind this counter. My window on Hillsdale," she said.
Impulse Video is located at 6356 SW Capitol Highway.
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