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@Work: Kaleidoscope Video

Dec. 16, 2004 – On an island where there isn't much to do other than the bar scene, Kaleidoscope Video at the Marketplace shopping center and its little sister, K2 in Coral Bay, fill the bill.
"I'm passionate about movies. I call myself the 'movie queen,'" owner Catherine Fahy said. Kaleidoscope has about 5,000 videos and DVDs on its shelves. K2 has about half that.
Residents and visitors both check out a wide selection of titles, including all the major hits and new releases. However, Fahy said that the "indie" films, those artsy movies usually by independent film makers, get the most attention.
"People tell me we have a better selection than the video store in their neighborhood," she said of the many visitors that browse the shelves.
She said that DVDs are quickly overtaking videos.
Fahy, 55, bought Kaleidoscope in June 1999 when it was still located in Pine Peace where Caravan Auto now sits. She opened K2 in August 2002.
She said that for the most part, it's been a positive experience. The only down side comes with "young transients" who use an invalid credit card for their deposit. They don't bring the movies back or they run up huge late charges. When she goes to run their credit cards, she finds they don't work and she's out the money.
"That's the challenge," she said
The road to video store ownership started in Isanti, Minn., where Fahy was born. Her parents soon moved to Minneapolis, and still live in the house where she grew up.
"When I go home, I really go home," she said.
She also visits with her daughter, Toni, 35, and son-in-law, Bill Jacaruso, in Austin, Texas.
After a career as a mother and a court reporter, what Fahy describes as a painful divorce led her to St. John in 1993. Like many established St. John residents, she first worked at Maho Bay Camps in their four-hour program. This summer program provides a tent in exchange for four hours a day at whatever needs doing. Fahy worked in housekeeping and then registration. She subsequently moved on to cleaning houses, then got into the hospitality industry at Cloud 9 Villas.
From there, she went to work at Kaleidoscope Video, eventually buying the business from Barbara Footer.
"I've feel like I finally found my niche," she said.
She's also found a spot in St. John life. She's an active member of the Rotary Club of St. John and sings with the St. John Singers.
Fahy keeps it all together by putting in long days and making lists.
"But I'm right where I belong. I'm having the most fun in my life," she said. Both Kaleidoscope and K2 are open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturdays and 1 to 7 p.m. Sundays.
Both residents and visitors need to leave a credit card number for a deposit.
Call Kaleidoscope at 779-4464 and K2 at 715-0880.

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