Seattle’s glorious Scarecrow Video turns 25!

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We are more than happy to share this press release from Seattle’s beloved and iconic video store, Scarecrow Video. In this day and age when brick-and-mortar movie rental shops are locking up their doors (like Blockbuster Video, just a couple weeks ago), it is heartening to see that Scarecrow is still around. Seattle folks, join Scarecrow in celebrating 25 years, the weekend of December 6th-8th, 2013!

* * * * *

On December 9, 1988 (promptly at noon) Scarecrow Video was born with one simple mission: unite people with film. Containing an inventory of 600 titles procured by George Latsios, the original Latona store location was but a ripple in the lake that would become Scarecrow. Seven customers signed up that day (four of whom we’re pleased to still have with us), 18 titles were rented, and the store’s first $38.98 was made. George, along with his wife Rebecca, continued to aggressively expand the rental inventory, as well as their staff. In November of 1994, Scarecrow was forced to look for a larger house to accommodate its then 18,000 titles, and moved down the street to its current location at 5030 Roosevelt Way. In 1997, Scarecrow became one of the first video stores in Seattle to add a major DVD section reinforcing its ethos to evolve in the new directions of cinema. In 1999, as a result of financial and health concerns, George and Rebecca transferred ownership of Scarecrow to Carl Tostevin and John Dauphiny, two long-time customers and avid movie lovers, with their promise to maintain its mission, and the next chapter in Scarecrow’s history began.

The last fifteen years have seen many more changes at Scarecrow. In late 2006, Blu-rays were introduced. Co-owner John Dauphiny exited and Carl’s wife, Mickey McDonough, entered. The inventory continues to grow and is now at an astounding 120,000 titles, a collection unmatched anywhere in the world. In addition to rentals, Scarecrow offers one of the largest browsing selections of DVDs and Blu-rays for sale in Seattle including unusual, rare and hard to find titles. 2011 saw the expansion of the Scarecrow experience by adding a coffee kiosk to encourage customers to stay awhile and, in 2012, a Screening Room was built to offer a larger space for customers to sample our impressive collection and connect film-lovers with each other. After 25 years of hard work weathering the ups and downs and always staying true to our mission of bringing people and film together, we have a lot to celebrate!

The weekend of festivities will commence on Friday, December 6th and will include:

• Big sales on New & Used titles including:

50% off all used items
$1.00 VHS and Laserdiscs
$3.00 off all Criterion titles
Mark downs on select box sets and out of print titles
$35 punchcards

• Raffles & giveaways
• Scavenger hunts
• On-going screenings of George’s, Rebecca’s and Carl & Mickey’s all-time favorite movies

Come celebrate with us! What was the first film you ever rented at Scarecrow? Come and tell us, and share your favorite Scarecrow memories. Haven’t heard of Scarecrow or been in yet? Come discover us for the first time! Long-time or new, young or old, come be a part of the beginning of the future of this world famous, one-of-a-kind film experience that can only be found here in Seattle.

“[Scarecrow is] like this last great bastion of everything ever made.”

– John Jacobson, co-founder of The Film School –

“Back in the days when I was involved with Microsoft Cinemania, I discovered Scarecrow and was amazed by its selection and the knowledge and passion of the staff. They don’t settle for putting a display of the latest big hit inside the door, but attract the curious, the adventurous and the obsessed movie buffs. The store is not only a resource, but a social center, where you can discover you are not the only person who loves Ozu, or Guy Maddin.”

– Roger Ebert – quoted in a Seattle Times article (11/07/04)

“Seattle’s Scarecrow Video has been called the greatest video store in the country, praised by the likes of Bernardo Bertolucci (who discovered it while shooting “Little Buddha”) and Quentin Tarantino (who walked from downtown Seattle to the store’s University District location as a kind of pilgrimage to the video Mecca), explored by Bertrand Tavernier in 1997 (he took in the entire laserdisc section and gushed over the selection of Cy Enfield and William Whitney tapes), and voted the Best of Seattle consistently in the annual Seattle Weekly readers polls.”

– Sean Axmaker – Indiewire

What: Scarecrow’s 25th Anniversary Celebration (

When: Friday, December 6, 2013 – Sunday, December 8, 2013 (on-going), 11 am to 11 pm, Fri. & Sat., and 11 am – 10 pm Sun.

Where: Scarecrow Video, 5030 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98105


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