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516 E John Street, Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 384-0977

Urbana-Champaign's Best Independent DVD Rental store
(locally owned and operated since 1985)

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Pledge to Buy Local: I pledge to make every effort to buy goods and services from locally owned businesses. If, for some reason, a locally owned business is not an option, I will look for locally owned franchises and/or nationally owned operations who I know support my community through public service or donations to local not-for-profits. By doing so, I can help keep the money I earn and spend in my community and support those who support me and those around me.
Books and Movies
  (note: a good source for locating locally owned independent bookstores is Indiebound)
The Big Box Swindle The Big Box Swindle
(Stacey Mitchell)

In less than two decades, large retail chains have become the most powerful corporations in America. In this deft and revealing book, Stacy Mitchell illustrates how mega-retailers are fueling many of our most pressing problems, from the shrinking middle class to rising pollution and diminished civic engagement. She then shows how a growing number of communities and independent businesses are effectively fighting back.
Going Local Going Local: Creating Self-Reliant Communities in a Global Age
(Michael H Shuman)

National drug chains squeeze local pharmacies out of business, while corporate downsizing ships jobs overseas. All across America, communities large and small are losing control of their economies to outside interests. Going Local shows how some cities and towns are fighting back. Refusing to be overcome by Wal-Marts and layoffs, they are taking over abandoned factories, switching to local produce and manufactured goods, and pushing banks to loan money to local citizens. Shuman details how dozens of communities are recapturing their own economies with these new strategies, investing not in outsiders but in locally owned businesses.
Home Town Advantage Hometown Advantage : How to Defend Your Main Street Against Chain Stores and Why it Matters
(Stacy Mitchell)

This book (in 5th printing) is a resource guide for citizens and policymakers, The Home Town Advantage will show readers how to: Assess the true impact of megastores on jobs, taxes and the local economy. Enact land use policies that deter chain stores and allow Main Street to thrive. Collaborate with nearby towns to develop a regional approach to megastores. Sharpen the competitive edge of small businesses through alliances and cooperatives. By Stacy Mitchell. 2000. Paperback, 101 pages.
Last Shop Standing Last Shop Standing
(Graham Jones)

Graham Jones was born in Anfield, Liverpool. After leaving school he worked in numerous dead-end jobs before getting his first break in the music industry thanks to a colleague's failed comical suicide attempt. Ever the optimist, Graham managed the Cherry Boys, a band that made Spinal Tap look mundane, and ran his own market stall, selling vinyl fruit bowls made from Beatles LPs melted into shape under a grill. He eventually found his vocation travelling the country selling records, tapes and CDs to independent record stores, and never looked back - until now. One of the founders of Proper Music Distribution, the largest independently owned music distributor in the UK, he lives in Chippenham, Wiltshire with his son Ben.
Small is Possible Small is Possible: Life in a Local Economy
(Lyle Estill)

In an era when incomprehensibly complex issues like Peak Oil and Climate Change dominate headlines, practical solutions at a local level can seem somehow inadequate.

In response, Lyle Estill's Small is Possible introduces us to "hometown security," with this chronicle of a community-powered response to resource depletion in a fickle global economy. True stories, springing from the soils of Chatham County, North Carolina, offer a positive counter balance to the bleakness of our age.
The Small-Mart Revolution The Small-Mart Revolution: How Local Businesses Are Beating the Global Competition
(Michael H Shuman)

The Small-Mart Revolution
details dozens of specific strategies small and home-based businesses are using to successfully out-compete the world’s largest companies. And it shows how consumers, investors, policymakers, and organizers can effectively revitalize their own communities by supporting local businesses.

Brick and Mortar and Love Brick and Mortar and Love

Brick and Mortar and Love follows the story of ear X-tacy Records, the legendary record store in Louisville, Kentucky, as it struggles to survive in the changing music retail industry. In-depth interviews include owner John Timmons, staff at ear X-tacy, leaders in the record store industry and scores of independent record store owners from all over the US. These interviews look into the state of the independent record store, what services they provide and what is at stake if they disappear.
Indies Under Fire Indies Under Fire: The Battle for the American Bookstore

In the span of just a decade, over half of the nation's independent bookstores vanished.  This revealing documentary tells the stories of three such stores fighting for survival. In Capitola, California, a developer's plans to bring Borders to town prompts a fierce debate over the rights of "big box" retailers to locate in a place famous for its small town charm.  In Palo Alto, news of the closing of Printers Inc. Bookstore prompts a local citizen to mortgage his house to try to save it.  And in Santa Cruz, when a Borders moves in down the street from the town's oldest bookstore, protests and vandalism ensue.  This compelling hour-long film follows these stories and raises tough questions about the place of local culture in an increasingly homogenized world.
I Need That Record I Need that Record

Guerilla filmmaker Brendan Toller unleashes “I NEED THAT RECORD! THE DEATH (OR POSSIBLE SURVIVAL) OF THE INDEPENDENT RECORD STORE,” a documentary feature examining why over 3000 independent record stores have closed across the U.S. in the past decade.

Greedy record labels, media consolidation, homogenized radio, big box stores, Ecommerce, shoddy "stars" pushed by big money, and the digital revolution all pose threats on the very well being of our favorite record stores and the music industry at large. Will these stores die? Will they survive?

Featuring- THURSTON MOORE of Sonic Youth, IAN MACKAYE of Dischord Records Fugazi/Minor Threat, activist/author NOAM CHOMSKY, MIKE WATT of the Minutemen, LENNY KAYE guitarist of the Patti Smith Group, CHRIS FRANTZ of the Talking Heads/Tom Tom Club, guitar composer GLENN BRANCA, PATTERSON HOOD of Drive-By Truckers, PAT CARNEY of the Black Keys, punk author LEGS MCNEIL, rock photographer BOB GRUEN, BP HELIUM guitarist from Of Montreal, and many indie record stores across the U.S. of A!
Last Shop Standing

Last Shop Standing

Last Shop Standing inspired by the book of the same name by Graham Jones takes you behind the counter to discover why nearly 2000 record shops have already disappeared across the UK. The film charts the rapid rise of record shops in the 1960′s, 70′s and 80′s, the influence of the chart, the underhand deals, the demise of vinyl and rise of the CD as well as new technologies. Where did it all go wrong? Why were 3 shops a week closing? Will we be left with no record shops with the continuing rise of downloading? Hear from over 20 record shop owners and music industry leaders as well as musicians including Paul Weller, Johnny Marr, Norman Cook, Billy Bragg, Nerina Pallot, Richard Hawley and Clint Boon as they all tell us how the shops became and still are a part of their own musical education, a place to cherish and discover new bands and new music.

Paperback Dreams Paperback Dreams

In a time when big chains and online sellers have put independent booksellers in a particularly precarious position, filmmaker Alex Beckstead reflects on the stories of two landmark bookstores and their ongoing struggles to remain relevant in the 21st century. By following Cody's Books owner Andy Ross and Kepler's Books owner Clark Kepler over the course of two tumultuous years, beckstead highlights the threats the shifting consumer landscapes pose to contemporary intellectualism.
The Real Dirt on Farmer John The Real Dirt on Farmer John

The epic tale of a maverick Midwestern farmer. An outcast in his community, Farmer John bravely stands amidst a failing economy, vicious rumors, and violence. By melding the traditions of family farming with the power of art and free expression, this powerful story of transformation and renewal heralds a resurrection of farming in America.
Twilight Becomes Night Twilight Becomes Night

Twilight Becomes Night follows the stories of five neighborhood stores in NYC. The store owners, employees, and customers bring the audience inside each store to live the daily routines, understand the challenges, and in some cases bear witness to their last day in business ever.

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