Video Store Turned Nonprofit Sets Last-Ditch Fundraiser

Norfolk's Naro Expanded Video Archival Library fights to stay open

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) - One of the largest video collections on the East Coast is launching a fundraiser to try to stay open.

The Naro Expanded Video Archival Library will conduct the last-ditch campaign on Kickstarter on Aug. 28.

The Norfolk store became a nonprofit last year. Tim Cooper oversees the business and while he's put thousands of dollars into Naro and collected around $15,000 in donations this year, the store still needs help.

"It's somewhat depressing and also scary, a different kind of scary. I mean who would want to give this up?" he said.

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The goal is to raise $25,000 via a Kickstarter campaign. Longtime employee Erik Swallow is also hoping the stores film school will get more people in the door.

"The Naro video film school theme for this month is dystopian films. And basically it's free and open to the public, so you just rent movies and you can either come to discussions or not... but it's a way for you to engage with the store, as well," said Swallow.

The store boasts more than 42,000 titles. Video stores and nonprofits have been rapidly closing in the wake of video-streaming technology and mail-based services like Netflix.

An informal group of video rental establishments says the only video collection on the East Coast that's larger than Naro's is at 112 Video in Long Island, which has 47,000 titles.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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