Wear black. Light a candle. Vigil for Video Americain tonight

The Baltimore Sun

They're taking it like a death in the family.

A death in the family of cool, quirky, character-filled shops that make Baltimore Baltimore.

So, they're mourning.

Tonight is the last night in business for the Video Americain video rental store in Charles Village. And to mark the occassion, the store will have a candlelight vigil at 10 p.m.

Here's the invitation they're circulating on Facebook:

In quirky Video Americain fashion, we will be holding a candlelight vigil after we close MONDAY night @ 10pm outside by the glowing neon sign.

Dress in black, bring flowers/candles/etc.

Let's send off one of our favorite social activities for the past 16 years.

By this morning, 81 people RSPV'd they'd be there.

The store announced last week the Charles Village store would close because of faltering business and the failing health of the owner. The store's other Baltimore location, on Coldspring Lane, will remain open.

Tonight will be the last day to rent movies in Charles Village. The store will close for a few days and when it re-opens on Friday, March 16, people will have a chance to get their hands on all of the store's merchandise.

People have taken news of the closing especially hard. Here are just a handful of the condolences piling up on the shop's Facebook page:

Tobias Olson: A sad day. I worked at this location 1994-1995 and I have many fond memories of the place, including getting reprimanded for playing Beyond the Valley of the Dolls in store. A great bunch behind the counter and in front. RIP!

Daphne Gardner: I'll be lighting a candle in Brooklyn in remembrance. So sorry I hadn't been back in so long, I never got to say good bye.

Jesse Heffler: This blows. I don't know if I would have made it without this place. Its proximity to the craft beer boutique, the Jean Rollin movies and the hip demure clerks will be sorely missed. I am saddened beyond words. Video Americain, you will forever be in my cultural ashtray of a mind, as your passing weighs heavy on my heart. Baltimore, Charles Village in particular, you're in my prayers tonight. Be well and overcome.

Eric Voboril: Some things are perfect in their off-kilter, obsessive, grand way. But then those are the things that can't last forever, can they? So many films & filmmakers I wouldn't have seen had this not been just around the corner. Thanks for the education in cinema, especially documentaries. RIP.

Who else plans to light a candle tonight?

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