VHS tapes still relevant in Tahoe
Tattered and faded boxes line the bottom two shelves of each section of Noah’s Video in Kings Beach. Patiently they sit, ready to frustrate anyone who dares insert them into the playing device people hardly remember ” the VCR.
These days, most of us will never have to worry about dealing with such antiquated VHS technology, but a unique market still exists in Tahoe that keeps these relics on the racks.
Because many rental homes and old cabins are not equipped to handle DVD technology, most local video stores continue to carry many popular titles in VHS format. What’s even crazier is that they are being rented out.
Though Steve Hanson’s Incline Village store, Video Maniacs, no longer carries VHS tapes, hundreds can be found in his Tahoe City store, Video Stop.
“A lot of people on the West Shore who have older time shares and second homes only have VCRs,” Hanson said. “Until we run our of space we are going to keep them in stock.”
All Best Video in Truckee carries between 2,500 to 3,000 VHS tapes, according to manager Casey Scott. And though they have started to phase them out, they still carry many popular titles in stock.
Noah’s Video rented out a few hundred VHS tapes between Christmas and New Year’s, according to manager Morgan Krizan.
“Every year people come in with cabins who only have VHS players,” she said. “We carry a lot of popular titles, and if we ever have to dispose of a tape we always replace it with a DVD.”
One of the most striking examples of this phenomenon is the Sunnyside Market in Tahoe City, where VHS tapes far outnumber DVDs.
“It’s sort of a service to the locals,” said the Kay Rovzar, the owner’s wife. “A lot of the small cabins and older rental homes only have VHS players.”
Rovzar estimates that some of the VHS tapes in the market are more than 15 years old, adding, “VHS holds up longer than DVDs,” which frequently get scratched and ruined after a few rentals.
Send us a photo of your home collection with a count of how many VHS tapes you have and we’ll pay for the winner’s next local video store rental. Send pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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