As the first event in its three-month celebration of the library’s 125th Anniversary, the Santa Monica Public Library is pleased to welcome local author April Smith for a celebration of the legacy of American Gold Star Mothers. The event takes place Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. in the Main Library’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium, 601 Santa Monica Blvd.

Established in 1928 and chartered by the United States Congress in 1984, the American Gold Star Mothers organization was formed to provide support for mothers who lost sons or daughters in World War I. Santa Monica’s own connection to American Gold Star Mothers was solidified on Nov. 11, 1951, when a plaque honoring them was installed at the fountain outside Santa Monica City Hall. The organization continues to exist today, honoring the soldiers we have lost and the families left behind.

In 2014, Santa Monica-based author April Smith first published her novel “A Star for Mrs. Blake,” the story of a pilgrimage of Gold Star Mothers to France to visit their sons’ graves. The novel received critical and reader acclaim and is now available in paperback. Join us in 2015, as April visits the Santa Monica Public Library to discuss her book and honor America’s Gold Star Mothers and our country’s many veterans. A book sale and signing follows the author’s presentation.

This program is part of the library’s 125th Anniversary, which takes place in December 2015.  To mark the occasion, the library has put together a slate of special events between November 2015 and January 2016 that honor the library’s position as a connecting point for its community – bridging the past to the future, bringing neighbors and visitors together, and plugging library patrons in to the resources they need to read, connect, relax and learn.

This program is free and open to all ages. Seating is first come, first served. The Santa Monica Public Library is wheelchair accessible. For special disabled services, call Library Administration at (310) 458-8606 at least one week prior to event. The Main Library is served by Big Blue Bus routes 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9 and 10. Ride your bike. Bicycle parking racks are available at the library

– Daily Press Staff