Videots, the video store that has been a fixture on College Avenue for 19 years, will be closing for good on Sunday.
The downward spiraling economy has decimated business, according to Dave Hern, who has worked there for about a year. The store is taking in an average of $100 a day, down from $500 in good times. Videots saw a $20,000 drop in revenues over the past four months as compared to the same period in 2008. “We’re broke. Business has dropped off preciptiously and we can’t pay the bills.”
Owner Don Hussman has tried repeatedly to buy the building, at 2988 College, so as to better control rent, but the owner has not wanted to sell, said Hern.
Customers can rent through Sunday. Those with credit can exchange it for DVDs.
The Berkeley Public Library has purchased the bulkof Videots’ collection, so it will still be available to the public.
Update: 3/1/10: I got a call from Marti Morec, the Collection Development Librarian at the Berkeley Public Library. She said Videot’s had not donated its collection to the library. A call to the Friends of the Berkeley Public Library revealed the collection isn’t going there either. I have tried to contact the owner to clear up the misunderstanding, but no one answers the phone at Videot’s and I have not succeeded in reaching him. When I do, I will clarify what will happen to all those DVDs.
Photo: Tracey Taylor