Adjacent to Los Angeles County, Ventura County is located in California’s Southern Coastal area, which is often referred to as the “Gold Coast.” The region is picturesque as it is comfortable, in fact, the area is considered to be one of the safest and most affluent areas in the country. The county’s location also gives it a great reputation as well, being close enough in proximity to Los Angeles that residents can commute there for work and still return home to the confines of this secluded paradise. Being such a neighbor to Los Angeles, the area has also felt the influence of LA’s Lowrider scene. Over the years, there have been quite a few award winning and magazine featured rides from Ventura County, which boasts a number of car clubs with many years of history in the area.
One of those car clubs is Ventura County’s own Connected Car Club, which was established in 1999-2000 by a group of dedicated riders with a singular vision. Bound together by car enthusiasts who all started their Lowriding careers at a young age, the club’s bond goes even deeper than that; they’ve also been good friends since childhood as well. With each rider finding themselves as a member of a car club, they decided to band together and form their own club―adhering to the moral standards and ethics they all shared.
The name Connected was chosen for the new club for its simplicity. There simply was no better way to describe the ties the members felt to one another personally, and as fellow Lowrider and car enthusiasts. The goal was to collaborate to establish a strong and elite club with their standards that would not only represent the finest in Lowrider builds but would also focus on their friendship and dedication to the lifestyle as well. With that in mind, the members of Connected designed their plaque and club colors with their collective personality as the focus. Since they shared such a unique vision, they wed to make sure that the design of the plaque was different and used a strong lettering that was easily identifiable on the streets and at the shows. They also wanted to stand out with their color choices as well. Connected club members all agreed upon the blue and gray club colors to separate them from the look of other clubs. This proved to be a great idea because in a sea of black car club shirts at the shows, Connected Car Club’s blue and gray tees stand out just like their club cars.
The club used a traditional hierarchy as they do believe very strongly in being organized. Connected has a president, vice president, a sergeant-at-arms and a panel of original members that oversee the club and ensure that the club members adhere to their standards out in the scene and in their own garages as well. They do have one differentiating guideline, however. Unlike most clubs, Connected Car Club members do not pay dues; instead, they all contribute when the club has a function or when the club enters a car show.
Initially the club began with nine members, but has since expanded to a 20-member roster. As far as new membership is concerned, the club is very protective of its reputation, so prospects can only be introduced via a current club member who is in good standing. The prospect must then be introduced to the club officers before being considered at a club meeting, and they must be willing to show commitment to organization and uphold the club’s standards. Once they qualify for a club vote and are voted in, they are placed on probation for a period of time. After that period is over, the prospect becomes a new member, which the sponsoring member is responsible for, for one year.