Book's message is ducky

March 08, 1999

Baumgardner exhibitBy KIMBERLY YAKOWSKI / Staff Writer

photo: RIC DUGAN / staff photographer

Be positive and never give up - that is the message Hagerstown City Park dweller Alexandra the duck imparts in the book "Alexandra Keeper of Dreams."

Written by Waynesboro artist and author Mary Alice Baumgardner, the book tells the tale of a bird who is inspired by the dancers she sees performing in the park's band shell. Longing to become a dancer herself, Alexandra is only able to do so after learning to adapt and overcome adversity.

"Her story is one of perseverance, encouraging kids of all ages to hold on to their dreams," said Baumgardner.

An exhibit and book signing was held Sunday at the Mansion House Gallery in City Park.

Baumgardner first published "Alexandra Keeper of Dreams," in 1993, selling some 3,000 copies.

Five thousand copies were printed for her second edition, Baumgardner said.

Priced at $16, it is available at local bookstores, she said. Prints of the book's illustrations are also available for $15 each.


She said she originally wrote the book for children but has found it appeals to adults as well. An artist since she was a child, Baumgardner used colored pencils for the tome's illustrations.

About 65 people attended Sunday's book signing, said Marilyn Harper, Mansion House director.

A second book signing and reading of the book will be held March 27 at the Mansion House.

"People love it. It's a charming story and the artwork is excellent," said Harper.

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