The surprising fact may be that the video rental chain will still have more than fifty locations that remain open in the state. How is Family Video surviving in 2020?

Remember when video stores were huge? You would always see a friend or a classmate cruising the racks for that perfect movie. If you were lucky, you could still get one of the new releases lined up along the outside walls. If you didn't want to splurge the $2.50 or they were out, you could scan the 2 for $1 inner aisles, where the movies were often categorized by genre: action & adventure, comedy, drama, horror, mystery, romance, science fiction, and others. You knew it was going to be a special Friday night when you got to make the choice of the video. They also had games in the other room (no, not that other room- that was for dad) to make the weekend complete.

Family Video survived the switch from VHS to DVD, then BluRay and, so far, has survived Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+ and all the rest. How did they do it? Of course late fees are good for the bottom line, but Family Video also stayed relevant by diversifying. They offered cell phone repair services, and then in 2019, started selling CBD oil. People like to watch movies and relax, the thinking goes, so why not take it to the next level of chill? Now that recreational marijuana is legal in Michigan, the business model may be on life support. Family Video is now liquidating 20 stores across Michigan, with 10 more in the final months of 2020.

Closings are primarily due to the change of customer habits as a result of the Covid shutdown earlier this year. Closing stores are liquidating all merchandise and fixtures.

-Family Video District Manager Randy Scott to MLive

While about 60 locations will remain in Michigan, Family Video will be closing stores in these communities this year:

  • Bay City (2 stores)
  • Flint
  • Fremont
  • Gladwin
  • Grand Haven
  • Ironwood
  • Owosso
  • Sparta
  • Three Rivers
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