A Mariachi Pantera community informational meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Franklin Elementary School.

The mariachi group is for children age 9 or older and will include students from all Santa Barbara area schools. No experience or instrument needed.

This program is available free because of the generous donations from the Santa Barbara Mariachi Festival Board as well as the Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation, although donations are always accepted.

“We are excited to offer this wonderful opportunity to all students in our area. We are providing an activity that promotes self-confidence and incorporates music into the lives of the youth,” Franklin Elementary Principal Casie Killgore. “What else is better! Five years from now, I hope we have high school students offered scholarships to attend universities with mariachi programs, accessing higher education through our group.”

Originally established by Killgore at Peabody Charter School, the group is now housed and run at Franklin Elementary School. This past summer the group played at De La Guerra Plaza and at the Santa Barbara Bowl for the Santa Barbara Mariachi Festival.

For more information in English or Spanish, call 805.963.4283, ext. 103.

Barbara Keyani is the administrative services and communications coordinator for the Santa Barbara School District.