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Film and TV

World’s last Blockbuster video store is hosting ’90s-themed slumber parties on Airbnb

Debby Saltzman, of Bend, Ore., poses for a photo on Monday, March 11, 2019, in front of the last Blockbuster store on the planet with her twin brother, Michael Trovato. Trovato was visiting from Melbourne, Australia, where he lives. Taking the photo is Saltzman's husband, Jeremy Saltzman. When a Blockbuster in Perth, Australia, shuts its doors for the last time on March 31, the store in Bend, Ore., became the only one left on Earth, and most likely in the universe. (AP Photo/Gillian Flaccus)

Nostalgic for the Friday movie-store experience of yesteryear? Airbnb sees your cinematic pining and raises you every ’90s kid’s dream: a slumber party at the world’s last Blockbuster.

Listed on Airbnb as a studio with one bed and a half-bath, the Blockbuster store in Bend, Ore., is offering three one-night stays to Deschutes County residents for $4 - about the same price as a Blockbuster video rental. And judging by the description, the getaway sounds like a 1990s dream:

"Whether you want to stay up until sunrise or pass out on the couch, we've created the perfect space complete with a pull-out couch, bean bags and pillows for you to cozy up with 'new releases' from the '90s. Crack open a two-liter bottle of Pepsi before locking into a video game, charting your future in a game of MASH, or watching movie after movie."

The '90s-themed stays will take place on Sept. 18, 19 and 20, and include unlimited video games, movies (be kind, rewind!) and snacks, including popcorn and nostalgic favorites such as Raisinettes, Nerds and retro bags of Doritos.

Stays can be booked beginning Monday at 1 p.m. Enhanced cleanings will take place between parties, with hand sanitizer and face masks also provided. Groups of up to four people can book a stay to isolate together.

Store manager Sandi Harding says listing the property on Airbnb is her way of giving back to the local community.

"I've seen the highs and lows of this business, but nothing can replace going to the store with loved ones to browse the shelves and find a movie that suits whatever mood you're in," writes Harding, who has worked at the store since 2004, in her Airbnb profile. "The COVID-19 pandemic has been a test of our community unlike any other, so we decided to list this stay to keep this tradition alive during these uncertain times."

And even those who don't go for the all-nighter can get in on the fun. If you're not a local resident, Harding and her staff will be fielding calls to her Blockbuster for those seeking movie recommendations - advice she has a lot of experience giving. Anyone can call the store's number to take advantage of the store's "callgorithm." Tell the staff what you like and don't like, and a real human will give you tailored recommendations.

After the final stay at the store is up in September, it will remain open to the public for viewing “for a limited time.”

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