In 1965, a man we will refer to as Mr. H built his first family drive-in theater in St. Louis, Missouri. Business inched along for the first couple of years for this entrepreneur with the majority of his profits coming from concessions. One night, a film depicting the birth of a baby resulted in huge traffic spikes, indicating crowds were hungry for more skin. In order to meet the public’s demand and increase profitability, he gave the crowds what they wanted.
Despite its popularity, the government did not support this new industry and Mr. H and his wife were eventually arrested in their own home on obscenity charges. Deciding to fight the charges, he took the case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court and won. In the meantime, the drive-in was still operating and business was booming for the undeterred entrepreneur.
With an expansive vision, Mr. H forged partnerships that allowed him to grow to 20 drive-in theatres in over a dozen states. As time went on, Mr. H endured more arrests for obscenity, harassment and heated legal battles, in addition to his business becoming a target for picketers, prosecution, arson, union trouble and the religious right. However, the public demand was unwavering and even over-sized fences imposed by city ordinances couldn’t keep them out. It wasn’t uncommon to find people building elaborate tree houses in the sky in order to see over the walls, hoping to sneak peeks of the revealing adult flicks.
At the age of 65, Mr. H decided to retire and hand off his portion of the business to the second generation. The early 80’s gave rise to VHS and indoor multiplex theaters where some of the first retail sales were possible. VHS was garnishing prices of up to $100! The 90’s brought expansion and increased variety to the skin flicks, as well as a desperate need for a place for men to comfortably watch porn outside the home. Theaters evolved into arcades – private viewing rooms for men to savor their favorite naughty films in private.
To say the arcades were a success would be an understatement. Lines of men wrapping around the store waiting to drop a quarter for 3 minutes of skin flicks could be seen. As a little boy, one of today’s owners recalls elaborate stories being told by old-timers pushing wheel barrows of coins that could be counted in the millions! Like everything else in business, the arcades evolved, now boasting comfortable leather couches in front of flat screen TV’s with 1000+ digital channel systems.
The government pressed on with hundreds of obscenity charges as well as store raids, however the flourishing business allowed the owners to continue the fight against the government’s moral opposition. Meanwhile, the first adult novelty sex toys entered the scene disguised as a vibrating cucumber and banana. Ironically, vibrators were illegal to buy but legal to possess in several states including Texas, that is until 2008 when a federal appeals court overturned a statute that had outlawed sex toy sales in the Lone Star State. Finally, it was no longer possible for states to enforce a public moral code by restricting private intimate conduct between consenting adults, opening the floodgates of business for the Sexysite crew.
Over the last two generations, the owners have witnessed the evolution of what is now a thriving chain of 16 adult retail megastores, boasting the largest selection of DVD’s, toys and intimacy items to satisfy everyone’s taste in a comfortable environment.
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