Caitlin Trude | Editor-In-Chief
Let’s be honest; I’m not opposed to cranking up the volume when it comes to hearing country hits on the radio, but I’m also not a boot-stomping, pickup truck enthusiast either. So when it came down to a friend’s idea of spending a Friday night attempting line dancing at the Brandin’ Iron Country Nightclub, I was more curious than anything else.
Before I raise any suspicions, the word “nightclub” seems to mark Brandin’ Iron as one of those upscale Hollywood clubs complete with disk jockeys setting down the hottest tracks for the youths. Yes, it is a place for people to come together to bust some moves, but in the form of line dancing (not twerking). And while Brandin’ Iron hosts college-age-specific events,it also hosts “Family Day” on Sundays, “Honky Tonk Saturdays,” regularly scheduled line dancing lessons and live musical performances.
Brandin’ Iron is located in the midst of the industrial district of San Bernardino, and is a bit of a drive from APU. My advice is to do a quick traffic check before hitting the road.
With the exception of the giant “B.I.” sign outside the nightclub building, Brandin’ Iron can be easy to miss. After a few wrong turns, we finally made it into the relatively small-sized parking lot and made our way to the building’s entrance.
On Fridays, attendees can get in for free before 8:00 p.m., and if you make it in by 7:30, you’ll have the opportunity to learn a line dance from one of Brandin’ Iron’s very own instructors. Depending on the day, you might find yourself learning a beginning, intermediate or partner dance, and may try anything from a two-step to West Coast Swing dancing techniques. Click here to see the line dance lesson schedule.
Although the DJs at Brandin’ Iron primarily play country tunes, you won’t necessarily be stuck listening to Shania Twain or Brad Paisley on a loop. Believe it or not, they ring in modern music as well, such as the likes of “Uptown Funk” and “All About That Bass” (no treble).
For those more content to watch others attempt to master the art of the two-step, consider also passing the time with a game of pool or braving it on the mechanical bull.
As with any dance-related event, a large determining factor of having a fun night out is the people you came with. Go with a group who’s down to get down, or at least attempt it. As for my group and I, perhaps we happened to arrive on one of those occasionally slower evenings, but we enjoyed ourselves enough nonetheless.
Read the Yelp reviews of Brandin’ Iron, the winner of Inland Empire’s Hot List Reader’s Poll award for “Best Dance Club in the Inland Empire.”