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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

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Video stores fight for survival in metropolitan maket

Looking in the phonebook for a nearby video store, one would find many corporate establishments and a handful of “mom and pop stores.” Family owned stores seem to be slowly slipping from society. Chain stores are gaining popularity, not to mention a growing number of customers.

Mike Hudgins, manager of Raz Ma Taz videos, has noticed the blow his store has taken from nearby corporate stores. Raz Ma Taz is located at 1840 Ashlan Ave. on the corner of Fowler and Ashlan.

“Sales have definitely deceased since Hollywood [videos] moved in across the street,” Hudgins said. “I’ve been in business ten years. I’ve thought about changing the store to something else.”

Even though Raz Ma Taz is surviving, it faces many challenges.

“We struggle with finances,” Hudgins said. “We have to have enough to pay the bill and the workers.”

Hudgins sticks to his small-shop strategy of being friendly and interactive with customers, in hopes that they will come again.

“We’re surviving because of the service,” Hudgins said. “We try to be as friendly as possible. In the bigger stores you don’t get that. We’re also priced lower.”

A recent study showed that 23 of 155 campus students polled shop at mom and pop stores.

Although many people shop at corporate video stores, some feel pity for the small, family owned store. Elise Aydelotte, ’05, is one of the 23 that still shops at mom and pop stores.

“I think you get better service at mom and pop stores,” Aydelotte said. “If you go a lot, you get to know the person behind the counter. Chain stores see tons of people every day.”

According to poll results, convenience and dependability play a large factor in where people shop.

“I go to Hollywood [videos] since it’s closest to my house,” Aydelotte said. “Basically, I go to whatever store is convenient. If I think a mom and pop store will have what I want, I go there. If I think a chain store will have the movie I want, I go there.”

While mom and pop stores own older classics, chain stores possess newer releases in more quantity.

“I think you are guaranteed movies at a chain store,” Aydelotte said. “If you want a random, old movie, go to a mom and pop store. Chains have the ?cool’ movies.”

Small-shop stores also help the community, according to an article by Stacy Mitchell found on the http://cdexchange.weblogger.com/ article, “Advantages of Mom and Pop Businesses.”

“Independent stores create a sense of place and unique local identity. This not only enhances our quality of life, but gives us an edge in generating new investment and tourism,” Mitchell said. “Small stores foster active streets and interactions with neighbors. Chain stores encourage auto-dependency and favor massive, impersonal shopping centers.”

Isaac Razo, ’04, also shops at a family owned store because of practicality and great selection.

“I shop at a family owned store because it’s closest to my house,” Razo said. “I know everyone. There’s a great selection. Whatever you’re in the mood for, they have. Also, the prices are better.”

While mom and pop stores provide sociable service with lower prices, one would find that they are rapidly disappearing. Soon, society may become full of mechanical sales people in gigantic corporate stores if the populace does not support small-shop stores.

Raz Ma Taz videos is open from 10 A.M. to 10 P.M. on weekdays and 10 A.M. to 11 P.M. Fri. and Sat. Their phone number is 292-9006.

For more information on mom and pop stores versus corporate stores, visit www.thefeather.com or http://cdexchange.weblogger.com/.

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