Borderline Bar Regulars Continue the Tradition

Although the Borderline Bar and Grill remains closed following the tragic shooting on Nov. 7, several events have brought the community together to heal through music and dancing.

On Nov. 8, vigils at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza and the Thousand Oaks Township Government City Halls took place to remember and honor the victims and survivors. New West Symphony musicians performed reflective music before the candlelight vigil, according to Borderline’s website.

The Borderline organization  has organized several benefit concerts at various locations for the shooting victims and their families. Brandin’ Iron, a country night club put on a show with performers Michel Austin, Shotgun Jefferson, Erin Cosgrove, Big Open Sky and several others on Nov. 23. Donations were accepted at the door and 100 percent of the proceeds were donated to the Borderline Shooting Victims Fund.

Cal Lutheran students have also been attending line dancing events every Saturday since the tragedy occurred.

Sophomore Alex Chatoff said the main DJ from the bar puts on the same songs that they would usually play at Borderline and everyone does the same dances that they all know.

“One time a place donated a dance studio so we could all dance Borderline dances and they had armed security and stuff so we felt really safe,” Chatoff said. “Another time was at somebody’s ranch and it was outside – it was freezing, but it was really fun.”

California State University Channel Islands sophomore Daisy Galindo has attended the line dancing events and said she feels it’s one of the first steps to moving forward, even though it is still very hard for a lot of people.

“I feel like it is promoting positivity and good energy, so I’m totally for it,” Galindo said. “I felt like people would be a little scared, but around like 200-300 people showed up. It was awesome to see everyone get together.”

Rafael Gonzalez, a friend of shooting victim Mark Meza, said he attended both the memorial service and candlelight vigil in Ventura County for Meza.

“There were so many people there,” Gonzalez said. “I probably didn’t know half of the people there, but yeah it was just very sad. We walked down to the beach and threw flowers in the ocean for him.”

As for the future of the Borderline building, there are no plans yet posted to the Borderline website. Those who have attended the pop-up events expressed their enthusiasm to see them continue.

“It’d be nice to have other locations for Borderline pop up in different spots,” Gonzalez said. “For the one in Thousand Oaks, a permanent memorial would be nice to remember the victims.”

Galindo said she feels it is important to stand strong to get through this difficult time.

“I hope they keep doing the college nights,” Galindo said. “It’s important to not give up because I think that’s very admirable to heal through the hardships.”

Memorials for Sean Adler, Blake Dingman and Jake Dunham will take place on Saturday, Dec. 8. There will also be a Borderline Victim Relief Concert  Dec. 8 at The Arena in Simi Valley featuring live bands, food, drinks and raffles.

Borderline’s website has more information for those interested in attending any future events to support those affected.

Leanna Kontos