Family Video to close 200 stores in Midwest

MADISON, Wis.– So long to the days of picking up a rental DVD and popcorn on Friday nights.

Family Video is closing 200 stores in the Midwest, according to Highland Ventures. Nine of those in South Central Wisconsin, including one in Madison, one in Fort Atkinson, two in Janesville and two in Beloit.

Family Video in Sun Prairie will remain open.

Streaming services slowly took customers away, but when Family Video was forced to close for six weeks during the coronavirus pandemic, it took everyone.

“Trying to pick back up from that. Everybody is trying to find a new normal and unfortunately, that new normal doesn’t include this,” multi-store manager Missy Fogler said.

Now it’s time to say goodbye to what Fogler said became more than just its name, an actual family.

“I cried because this is one of those I know these guys by name. They know me,” Fogler said.

Fogler said these are the same customers who helped Family Video stores last far longer than its competitors.

“No luck. It was customer service,” Fogler said. “It’s always been customer service for us.”

Despite subscribing to multiple streaming services, customers like Kelsey Heitman and Cole Prior still occasionally shop for DVD’s.

“It’s like a ritual. Pick out a movie here and get a pizza instead of sitting at a TV screen going what else is there,” Heitman said.

Fogler remains confident that DVD’s are gone forever, as some people can’t subscribe to streaming services.

“With streaming, you have to have internet service, right?” Fogler said. “Unfortunately, we have those customers who don’t have internet. So, they need our services.”

The Family Video on Maple Grove Drive in Madison will close sometime in October. Until then, all of the merchandise is on sale.