As of mid-February, we here at Lost Weekend Video were preparing to close up shop on May 1st after 18 years & numerous Best of the Bay awards. Our rent, while market rate, has continued to rise & video rentals have continued to decline at a precipitous rate. But a couple of things then happened that with a little help we hope may save our skin. Today, Lost Weekend Video is thrilled to announce that this Spring, instead of closing our doors, we will be relaunching the beloved Valencia Street store and expanding our services & collection with a new East Bay location. After years of brainstorming and being thwarted both by constantly evolving technology and bureaucratic obstacles, we believe we’ve developed a plan that will allow our thoughtfully curated collection of over 27,000 films (thousands of which are unavailable online) to remain accessible to Bay Area movie lovers. We’ve talked to surviving stores across the country to learn what has worked best for them and after adding a few of our own innovations, we’ve come up with a new model for a now 21st Century video store. We believe that this three part plan will not only save Lost Weekend & its irreplaceable library of films, but will also allow us to thrive for years to come.
First, Lost Weekend, in partnership with Oakland’s 1234Go! Records, will be relaunching the Valencia Street location on April 18th (Record Store Day 2015) as a new video store/record store hybrid, ready to serve all of your physical media needs. VHS, DVD, cassettes & vinyl - all in one place - with an expanded staff of enthusiastic fans ready to recommend the best in new or classic music & film. .
Second, Lost Weekend will be enhancing and expanding our video & retail services to better serve the needs of the 21st Century film enthusiast. In addition to our current website, our catalog will be fully searchable online, with links to IMDB & weekly updates of new acquisitions. In collaboration with TCB Couriers, delivery will be available for those unable to make it to the store. Lost Weekend memberships will be available that provide discounted rentals, Lost Weekend swag and additional valuable services including private use of the Cinecave screening room. In addition to our traditional rental service, we will begin buying and selling VHS/DVDs & DVD collections, including new releases, music films & docs, collectibles & special orders. We will have a continuously fully stocked collection of our own signature t-shirts, totes & hoodies as well as the ever popular Cinemetal Directors Tees. We will also begin providing affordable video transfer services on-site.
Third, Lost Weekend will open The Cinecave East Bay - a video store & comedy club in the heart of Oakland. We’ll have a carefully curated video rental store, with full access to our combined collection on both sides of the Bay, and a film-themed beer & wine bar. There will also be the Cinecave comedy club, offering one of the best & most affordable places to experience the cutting edge of the Bay Area comedy scene.
Our ultimate goal with all of these projects is to prevent yet another invaluable collection of films from disappearing from public use into private collections, but we hope to do this by evolving our model while continuing to promote the throwback concept of a place on Valencia Street where people can gather to be enthusiastic about film or music or our still lovely Mission District community. We also hope to continue to nurture the amazing & seemingly endless batch of new comedy talent emerging from the Bay Area. But for all of this we need your help! We have exhausted our funds trying to get to this point and it will be an expensive project. We have created a variety of ways in which you can support us - either with your labor, your memberships, your donations, your purchases, your word-of-mouth or your attendance at a blow-out benefit. Please have a look at our website’s ‘Support Lost Weekend’ project page for details on all of these options. Of course, the best support is to just keep coming by and renting movies! Thanks so much to the entire Bay Area for all of your kind words, your encouragement & your support over the last 18 years - here’s to another 18!