Ottavio’s Fundraiser – March 2

Ottavio’s Italian Restaurant is holding a fundraiser for SOKM on Tuesday, March 2nd from 3:30pm to 7:30pm.  It is good for curbside pickup or delivery orders. To order visit or call 805-482-3810. Ottavio’s will donate 20% of the proceeds to … ( more… )

Future ACHS Music Program Student?

At 5:30 pm, Wednesday, June 21, ACHS Music Director Daniel Cook will conduct meetings for incoming freshmen, students new to the program, and their parents. Additional information  will be provided at 6 pm for Rancho Campanaparents and students who will … ( more… )

Taste of Camarillo Benefits SOKM

Meadowlark Service League has supported Save Our Kids’ Music for over 25 years.  They raise over $220,000 annually to support numerous organizations in Ventura County. The Taste of Camarillo, Meadowlark Service League’s largest fundraiser, is the longest running wine and … ( more… )

Awards Presented to Outgoing 8th Grade Musicians

Every year the music programs at the middle schools present awards to certain outgoing 8th grade students; the awards are usually presented at the Spring Concerts.  The Outstanding Musician awards include a $100 dollar scholarship, provided by SOKM, which the … ( more… )

Award Winners Honored at Spring Concerts

Las Colinas 2016 Awards Outstanding Eighth Grade Musician: Scholarship/$100.00 Name on perpetual plaque, and small individual plaque Colby Adams Most Improved Eight Grade Musician: Name on perpetual plaque, and small individual plaque Katelyn Raney Lorelai Godin Alan Black Memorial Award: … ( more… )

PVSD Music Students Excel; Four Selected for Honor Groups

Four students from the Pleasant Valley School District (PVSD) were selected as members of musical honor groups for 2016. Donovan O’Brien from Santa Rosa Technology Magnet School placed second chair cello in the 2016 All-Southern California Middle School Honor Orchestra. … ( more… )

YAA The Off Beats to go to Jazz Festival

YAA The Off Beats will be attending the 8th Annual Newbury Park High School Jazz Festival on Saturday, March 19, 2016. According to the NPHS music department website, they “have managed to secure some of the best adjudicators and clinicians … ( more… )

SOKM Presents Checks to PVSD Board

On Thursday, November 19, SOKM board members Karen Gatchel, Betty Weyek, Keiko Chun and Cathy Crook attended the Pleasant Valley School District Board meeting and presented checks totaling $26,979 to help support the music program.

PVSD Superintendent RaeAnn Michaels accepted the checks.

Oxnard Music Advocacy Group & Camarillo City Council Honored at Awards Dinner

Each year, the Ventura County Arts Council recognized individuals, businesses and organizations who have served the community by supporting the arts.

This year, on Wednesday, October 21, 2015, the Arts Stars Awards dinner was held beginning at 5:30 pm at the Tower Club in Oxnard.

Honorees included Arts Philanthropist Paul Finkel, MD; Non-Profit Arts Organization Leader Jim Rice; Salvadore Bravo Award for Individual Artist Xavier Montes; Business Montecito Bank & Trust, National Recognition William Hendricks, Public Agency Camarillo City Council, and Arts Education Oxnard Music Advocacy Group (OMAG).

SOKM was mentioned by Cherie Moraga of OMAG for helping them get started in 2011. The Camarillo City Council mentioned that they have supported SOKM for 24 years.

Congratulations to these individuals, businesses and groups! Thank you for supporting the arts, and for mentioning the part SOKM plays!

New West Symphony Offers VIP Family Club

New West Sympathy logoThe New West Symphony offers a special ticket promotion called the “VIP Family Club” for families with children ages 7-13.

The benefits of membership are:

  • Members can purchase subscription tickets to all six Masterpiece Series performances of the New West Symphony for the discounted price of $122 per adult (limit two), and $62 per child (age 7-13).
  • Members can purchase individual tickets for $24 per adult (limit two), and $14 per child (age 7-13).
  • Specially prepared materials and activities for each concert, designed to engage young people with the music and enhance their concert experience.

For more information, visit the symphony’s website or download the VIP Family Club Flyer (English or Spanish).

To sign up for the VIP Family club, call Educational Programs Manager Karen Gatchel at (805)558-4412, or email

Student Musicians Receive Awards

At each of the Spring Concerts in May, graduating 8th grade students received awards, including Outstanding Musician, Most Improved, and a number of memorial awards. 2015 STUDENT AWARDS – Monte Vista Outstanding Eighth Grade Musician: CHRISTOPHER CHANG Scholarship of $100.00 … ( more… )

SOKM President Honored by Camarillo Council PTA

Karen Gatchel has received the Golden Oak Award from the Camarillo Council of PTAs.  The Golden Oak award is “given to recognize, as the most prestigious of the Honorary Service Awards, an individual or organization that has made significant contributions to the … ( more… )

Trish Copsey Receives Educator of the Month Award

On Tuesday, April 28, Monte Vista Middle School Music Director Trish Copsey received the Teacher of the Month Award. Each year the Camarillo Chamber of Commerce Education Committee selects honorees to be designated “Educator of the Month” for the school … ( more… )


2015-05-04 - Amazon SmileRegister with Amazon Smile – .5% percent of your on-line purchase is SOKM

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David Kwon Wins Gold In Junior Bach Festival

David Kwon has won a gold medal in the Complete Works Audition of the Southern California Junior Bach Festival (SCJBF).  First place winners in the Audition performed in the SCJBF Complete Works Awards Concert which took place on Saturday, October … ( more… )

Local Teen Band Donates $1,000

Local teen band Galvanized Souls filled local music studio Rock City with their own sound on Saturday, January 11, wowing the crowd with their music but also raising $1,132 for SOKM! The event marked the release of the band’s latest … ( more… )

$1,000 Donation from Walmart

In November 2013, SOKM was invited to apply on-line for a Walmart grant to celebrate the opening of the Walmart Neighborhood Market in the Camarillo Target Shopping Center. SOKM requested money to repair donated instruments.  On Monday, January 13,  SOKM … ( more… )

Six Selected for Honor Band

Congratulations to the following students who were selected for the Ventura County Middle School Honor Band: From Las Colinas Middle School: Rachel Wang – flute; Derek Chun, Christopher Cha – clarinet; Colby Adams – trumpet; Dustin Reese – trombone.   … ( more… )

Thanks to Volunteers!

Thank you to everyone who volunteers to make the PVSD and YAA concerts and activities succeed.  Without volunteers, SOKM would find it difficult if not impossible to conduct registration, help present concerts, and so on. In September 2013, a number … ( more… )

OUHSD Grants PE Waiver

The Oxnard Union High School District board provided a waiver today for Spring semester 2014 that allows freshman and sophomore students to apply Concert or Symphonic Band as PE class credit. The board will initiate a review of the PE policy for the Fall semester 2014.

Thank you to all those who attended the meeting, spoke, called and wrote emails. If you would like to thank the district and board for addressing this issue, here is the contact information:

Gabe Soumakian – OUHSD Superintendent –

Socorro Lopez Hanson –  OUHSD Board President – 

Gary Davis – OUHSD Board Member – 

Steve Hall – OUHSD Board Member –

Wayne Edmonds – OUHSD Board Member –

John Alamillo – OUHSD Board Member –

PE Requirement for 9th & 10th Grade Students

The Oxnard Union High School District is enforcing the requirement that band students at all the high schools take four semesters of PE during their 9th and 10th grade years instead of having marching band count as four semesters of … ( more… )

Sign up for to Benefit SOKM

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Ventura County Star YAA Class Article

The October 16, 2013 edition of the the Ventura County Star included a great article about the YAA Beginning Band and Beginning Strings classes:     … ( more… )

Announcing Online YAA Class Registration

Form imageBeginning this fall Save Our Kids’ Music and the PVSD Youth Arts Academy are providing online registration for the 2013-2014 school year classes. Signing up for classes can now be done conveniently online or at one of the in-person events listed below.

Online registration will be available starting at the following times:

Thursday, September 19
Santa Rosa Beginning Band
Intermediate Strings
The Off Beats
Concert Band
Beginning Band

Saturday, September 21 at 10:30am
Beginning Strings

For more information on classes for this school year and to register online, go to or click the Classes selection of the SOKM website menu.

You can also register in person during the YAA Registration events being held at the former Los Altos School site (700 Temple Ave in Camarillo – Room C-3) at the following times:

Saturday, September 21, 11:00 am to 3:00pm
Tuesday, September 24, 6:00pm -7:00pm
Saturday, September 28, 11:00am to 3:00pm

If you plan to register in person, please be sure to download, print, and fill in the Registration Form and Emergency Information Card.

Santa Rosa Technology Magnet Adds Band

Beginning Band will now be offered at Santa Rosa Technology Magnet School (SRTMS). As SRTMS is on an “AB” (alternating day) schedule, the band classes will be offered as follows:

  • Woodwinds (Flute, Clarinet) on Mondays & Wednesdays
  • Brass/Saxophone and Bell Set (Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Baritone) on Tuesdays and Thursdays
  • Combined band on Fridays.

All classes will be held during “zero period”, 7:10am – 8:00am. Mr. Rene Godina will be the director.

Registration for the SRTMS bands can be performed online starting Saturday, September 21 by visiting our Class Information and online registration page.

In-person registration will also take place on the same days, times and place as YAA registration (click to download the Santa Rosa Band Program Registration Form and the YAA Emergency Form).

Pleasant Valley School District and Same Our Kids’ Music strongly believe in providing a quality arts experience to as many students as possible, but we cannot do it alone. To help us achieve success, we are requesting an annual donation of $300.00 for the SRTMS class.


A Resounding Success: Summer YAA

The summer PVSD Youth Arts Academy program was again successful, with instructors reporting that the students improved in their musical ability. On the last day of the program, July 19, there were performances that showcased Beginning Band, prepared by Don … ( more… )

Middle School Bands Swell in Number

The band programs at Monte Vista and Las Colinas Middle Schools continue to grow. At Monte Vista, Advanced Band has 38 students, Intermediate has 51, and Beginning has 52. As there is a waiting list of more than 55 students … ( more… )

Donovan O’Brien to Play with Youth Orchestra

Santa Rosa Technology Magnet School 6th grader and cellist Donovan O’Brien, 11, from PVSDYAA Orchestra, has successfully auditioned for the Conejo Valley Preparatory Orchestra. Donovan, who also plays violin, piano, guitar and drums, started playing cello last year, after Mr. … ( more… )

Awards Presented to Graduating 8th Graders

At this year’s Spring Concerts, as is true every spring, awards were presented to a number of graduating 8th grade musicians in recognition of their achievements while part of the PVSD/YAA music programs. The Outstanding Eighth Grade Musician award, which … ( more… )

Donations Help SOKM Achieve Goals

Our generous donors have helped SOKM achieve its fundraising goal for 2012-2013! The total to date is: $45,194.07 Here are few highlights from the 2012-13 Fundraising. Thank you for ALL your hard work to help SOKM achieve its financial goals … ( more… )

Thank You to All Volunteers

SOKM thanks all the volunteers who helped with the Spring Concerts on May 16, 17, 18 and 23. Volunteers helped set up display tables, set up the reception, got the cookies and the punch from McDonald’s, monitored the SOKM table, … ( more… )

Interview with Allamae Graham

Mrs. Allamae Graham, a very youthful 94, epitomizes the concept of “paying it forward”.  Having begun playing the violin when she was around 8 years old, Allamae played in many different orchestras, musical trios and quartets (but never solos, she … ( more… )

High School Music Programs

PVSD 8th Grade Music Students Congratulations on your pending graduation from middle school!  We encourage you to continue your musical endeavors at the high school level and eventually college level. Save Our Kids’ Music (SOKM) is providing you with contact … ( more… )

Camarillo High School Mariachi Class

Mariachi Class will be offered at Camarillo High School in fall 2013 during period 3. Earn Performing Arts credit, learn trumpet, guitar, guitarron, violin and singing! No Experience Needed!

For information see Mr. Stava in the Music Dept, the Counseling Dept. or call Tony Rivera at 805-795-6021

Download Flyer

SOKM Receives Community Service Grant

Save Our Kids’ Music was one of only nine organizations that were awarded a Community Service Grant this year from the City of Camarillo.  SOKM will receive $5,400 in summer 2013 and will use the funds to purchase a 3/4 … ( more… )

Four for Honor Band

Four middle school students, all from Las Colinas, recently auditioned for and were accepted into the Ventura County Middle School Honor Band.  The band will perform a concert on March 1, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. at Buena High School in Ventura. … ( more… )

Reese Copsey Honored at School Board Meeting

Reese Copsey, music director at Las Colinas Middle School and director of YAA The Off Beats, was honored at the November 15, 2012 School Board Meeting.  Reese, one of the founding members of Save Our Kids’ Music, recently retired from … ( more… )

SOKM Says Thank You for Instruments Donated

An instrument drive, held during this fall’s YAA registration, garnered 27 instruments for the music programs that SOKM supports. That’s 27 more students who will have access to an instrument so they can to participate in the programs! A big … ( more… )

SOKM Presents Check to School Board

At the November 15, 2012 School Board meeting, SOKM Chair Karen Gatchel presented the school board with checks totaling $19,890. Karen thanked the board for their continued support and said that “we are proud of SOKM’s 22-year partnership with the … ( more… )

Music and Art Groups Busy in the First Semester

The YAA and middle school music groups are busy, learning music in genera’l but focusing on music for the upcoming holiday programs. Reese Copsey, music director at Las Colinas Middle School, reports: “the LC Intermediate Band just completed what’s become … ( more… )

DW Drums Donates to Middle Schools

DW Drums, in conjunction with the Camarillo Old Town MusicFest, is donating two drum sets, one each to Las Colinas and Monte Vista Middle Schools. The drums were presented in a ceremony at Las Colinas on Friday, September 7 at 12:00 pm.

Many thanks to DW Drums!

Join the New “A Taste of Camarillo” Wine Club

Enjoy fine wine and benefit local charities through the Meadowlark Service League’s new wine club.  100% of the proceeds will benefit local groups including SOKM.  Shipments of two bottles of limited-production, award-winning wine can be shipped monthly, every other month, or quarterly; for $49.95 per shipment (shipping and handling included; plus tax where applicable)  In addition, members receive a newsletter with information on the wine, tips, recipes and more.

For more information and an enrollment form, go to the Wine Club website or call 1-800-777-4443.

DONORS: Thanks for helping SOKM reach $35,000 Goal!

Thanks to our donors, SOKM has reached our $35,000 goal with a total of $35,232.00! It is because of our donors that SOKM is able to support the PVSD Music and Youth Arts Academy programs.

For those that donated to help meet our goal, we will be sending home a SOKM sticker with your students, so check their backpacks!

Watch for the stickers!

City Council Approves Grant Request for 14 Instruments

The Camarillo City Council approved SOKM’s request for five clarinets, three trombones, four flutes, one cello and one alto saxophone! Thank you to Iain Anderson for writing the grant request with assistance from Barb McKown, Betty Weyek, Reese Copsey, Trish Copsey, Rene Godina and Karen Gatchel.

Thanks to SOKM Board members in attendance at the City Council meeting: Betty Weyek, Iain Anderson and Karen Gatchel. Also, thank you to Brad Capps, Beginning Band student from Las Colinas who played the new Yamaha tuba at the meeting. He was a hit! Thanks to Reese Copsey for preparing him for his City Council debut. The City Council is expecting students playing ALL of the approved instruments to perform next year.

SOKM Board Has New Treasurer

Keiko Chun became SOKM’s new treasurer at the March 13, 2012 General Meeting.  Keiko steps in for Barb McKown, who will remain a member-at-large and still be involved with SOKM activities.

Thanks to Keiko for stepping up to fill this office!

Peggy Smith Named Volunteer of the Year

SOKM board member-at-large Peggy Smith has been named the Chamber of Commerce Volunteer of the Year. A resident of Camarillo, along with her husband Carey, for almost 27 years, Peggy has three grown children, Hannah, Emily, and Abraham. It was … ( more… )

Ventura County Middle School Honor Band

Congratulations to the Pleasant Valley School District students who were selected to participate in the Ventura County Middle School Honor Band! From the left, Jordyn White (flute) Monte Vista 8th grade, Derek Chun (clarinet) Las Colinas 6th grade, Aaron Talabucon … ( more… )

New Tuba Purchased

“Not having a tuba is like a chocolate chip cookie without the chocolate chips. Without the chocolate chips, the cookie is good, but oh so much better with the chocolate chips. For music to be pleasing to the ear, there’s … ( more… )

Monte Vista Band Alums Donate “Pirates” Music

The Monte Vista Advanced Band Class of 2011 has donated music to the Monte Vista Band program. The MVS students voted for “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” #10016947 for $50.00. Said director Trish Copsey, “The kids think it … ( more… )

Painting and Drawing Class Draws to a Close

The YAA Painting and Drawing class will be ending on Wednesday, February 29, 2012. Said teacher Katherine Pichelli, “We have had such a great session in the Youth Arts Academy Painting and Drawing Class! …We have learned how to use … ( more… )

Joyce Seok Wins Music Competition

Las Colinas Advanced Band flute student, Joyce Seok, who also plays keyboard and flute in YAA/The Off Beats, won first place and $200 in a piano competition of 91 students. The competition, which took place on Saturday, February 4, 2012, was … ( more… )

Congratulations Ventura County Honor Band Students

Congratulations to the following students for being selected for the Ventura County Middle School Honor Band! The concert will be Friday, February 24, 2012, 7 PM at Buena High School. Jordyn White – Flute – Monte Vista Middle School Helen … ( more… )

SOKM Presents Donation to PVSD/YAA

Thanks to our generous donors! In November 2011, $33,856 was donated by Save Our Kids’ Music (SOKM) to the Pleasant Valley School District. The money was donated at the PVSD board meeting in November. SOKM Board members in attendance were … ( more… )

Garage Sale a Success for Monte Vista Band

The Lott family hosted a garage sale to benefit the Monte Vista band on Saturday, October 29. With the help of many Advanced Band students, the sale raised $415.00 for the band program. Many thanks to those who helped make … ( more… )

SOKM Board Chairman Interviewed

Karen Gatchel, Chairman of the Save Our Kids’ Music Board, was interviewed for a news episode broadcast on KDB Radio (93.7 FM) on Sept. 21, 2011. In the interview, Karen discusses the history of SOKM and how the Ventura County … ( more… )

New Board Members for 2011-2012

SOKM welcomes the following new board members for 2011-2012:  Member-at-Large Keiko Chun, Member-at-Large Bev Matsumura, Member-at-Large Peggy Smith.  Thanks to these new members for stepping forth to help guide SOKM! … ( more… )

SOKM Donates $42,400 to PVSD

Save Our Kids’ Music, through the generosity of our individual donors, business partners, community organizations and grants, has donated $42,400 to the Pleasant Valley School District during the 2010-2011 school year to keep the music alive!  SOKM is truly amazed … ( more… )

Ralphs Reward

SOKM is now enrolled in the Community Organization program with Ralphs.  Every time you shop at Ralph’s and use your Rewards Card, a small percentage will be donated to SOKM.  Go here to sign up. You will need your Ralphs … ( more… )