The last store standing in the video rental apocalypse, however, is in Bend, Oregon.
But it wasn't enough to counter a planned lease increase at both Alaska locations. But Alaska has been something of a die-hard for the chain, with stores in Wasilla, North Pole and Soldotna finally closing earlier this year, along with another Anchorage location. The stores will reopen at noon on July 17, staying open through August for inventory sales. But Blockbuster faithfuls knew it could never replace the authenticity of a physical store.
"It's tough to tell the customers, it really is", Kevin Daymude, general manager at the DeBarr, Anchorage, location, told the newspaper.
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"It's always kind of a kick in the trousers every time we close a store", explained Payne.
"We hope to see you at our stores during the closing, even if it's just to say "Hello", Blockbuster Alaska said in a Facebook post. Can Bend remain? Its appeal, locals say, lies in the customer service available and, ironically in a time when choice is abundant online, the ease of picking from a limited range. "The memorabilia is probably going to go back to the owner", Daymude explained, "which is fine, because I don't want a jockstrap in my house". An employee interviewed for the segment noted that many people simply photograph or enter the store for the novelty and memories. "I'm not sure what we're going to do with it". In May, John Oliver and HBO even donated a weird assortment of Russell Crowe paraphernalia to one of the Anchorage stores that announced plans to close on Thursday. She was shocked to learn that her store will soon be the only one in the country. "We have a bunch of 19-year-olds working here - it's fun explaining to them what a floppy disk is".
"You would not believe how much business we got just from that memorabilia alone", he said. "It just seems a little crazy" General Manager Sandi Harding said, adding that she doesn't plan on shutting up shop.