Maggie says, “I’m over the moon celebrating 30,000 visitors to my blog! Many thanks to my great supporters and fans, including US Olympian and Coach of Champions, Erica Fraley [Bartolina]! It’s an honor to have my story recognized by awesome role models like Erica. Learn about Erica’s inspiring life story and the impact she’s having on young people here: http://tinyurl.com/pdk8392
JAMESTOWN, Kan. — Storybook pole-vaulter Maggie Steele celebrated her first anniversary in the company of a former world-record holder, Olympians, and Olympic hopefuls at Doctoberfest 2013 on Saturday, Oct. 5th.
The eighth annual event at the Tailwind Pole Vault Club featured many high-flying professional, collegiate, and high school athletes who rocketed toward the rafters in this converted basketball gym, which now is considered a kind of Field of Dreams for pole-vaulting here in the northernmost part of the central Kansas prairie.
Among nearly 60 athletes who charged down the rubberized runway Saturday, the biggest thrills were provided by the youngest vaulters, future greats such as Kendall Reynolds and Zoe Bechard, a pair of 10-year-olds from nearby Concordia, Kan., who reminded everyone in attendance that having lots of fun is what vaulting at Tailwind is all about. Continue reading
How It’s Made recently produced a super-cool video segment showing how fiberglass vaulting poles are manufactured at Gill Athletics, the largest producer of track and field equipment in the world, including poles like the one used by heroine Maggie Steele in the new teen sports novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.
It’s no accident that the cover of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon depicts the daring athlete soaring skyward on a lime green Skypole. “We wanted the vaulting segments to be as realistic as possible,” said author Grant Overstake. “So it was a must for Maggie to use a Skypole to pursue the vault of her dreams.”
Gill Athletics was delighted to see a wholesome character like Maggie soaring on a Skypole, because it’s the go-to pole for real-life champions, too.
“Gill Athletics is proud to play even a small role in the telling of Maggie’s story,” said Mike Cunningham, National Sales Manager. “The ‘Mean Green’ Skypole has become one of the most popular vaulting poles in high school history; so it is special to see it recognized on the cover of a special book such as Maggie Vaults Over The Moon!”
Order your copy of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon!
While heroine Maggie Steele soars to great heights in the novel Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, she must keep the source of her pole-vaulting wisdom a secret from everyone. Instead, she lets people assume that her pole-vaulting knowledge comes from an old book she found on her brother’s bookshelf, Track and Field for Boys by Payton Jordon. (To discover who Maggie’s coach really is, you’ll have to read her story!) Continue reading
The “coaching voice” in Maggie Vaults Over the Moon comes from the legendary Earl Bell, one of the greatest pole-vaulters and pole vault coaches in the world. Earl is a former world record–holding pole-vaulter, who won the bronze medal at the 1984 Summer Olympics. He is the current coach to a number of the nation’s top men and women vaulters. At his last Olympic appearance, the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, Earl finished fourth. He set the world pole-vaulting record of 5.67 meters (18‘ 7 1/4”) on May 29, 1976, at the USA Track & Field (USATF) National Track and Field Championships at Cessna Stadium in Wichita, Kansas. The author, working as a volunteer helper at the event, Continue reading
“Every single person should be able to relate to Maggie in Maggie Vaults Over the Moon. We have all experienced loss, heartache or tragedy, but not all find a way to overcome. It doesn’t matter if you are a pole vaulter, male or female; it’s about finding something in which you are passionate and not giving up. Maggie does just that—she finds her passion and it ends up taking her over the moon.” –Jeremy Scott, USA Olympic Trials Silver Medalist and Team USA Pole Vaulter at the 2012 London Olympic Games
About Jeremy Scott
Believed to be the tallest world class pole vaulter in history, Scott stands at 6 feet 9 inches tall. His breakthrough 2009 season got off to a great start with his win at the USA Indoor Championships in Boston, and he broke the 19-foot barrier for the first time in his career with his winning clearance June 14 in Jonesboro, Ark., when he cleared 5.82m/19-1.25. A letter-winner in three sports in high school (football, basketball and track) Scott enrolled at Allegheny College to play football. After a broken foot as a sophomore caused Scott to focus more on pole vaulting, he decided to enroll at one of National Track & Field Hall of Famer Earl Bell’s pole vault camps in the summer of 2001, and the improvement was immediate. Continue reading
“I myself experienced loss when I was a young girl. Sports were my outlet and helped me through some of the hardest times of my life. This book captured me cover to cover. I highly recommend “Maggie Vaults Over the Moon!”” –Becky Holliday, Team USA Pole Vaulter, USA Olympic Trials Silver Medalist, and Finalist in the London Olympics
About Becky Holliday
After nearly a decade of competition as a post-collegiate professional, Holliday secured her first Olympic team berth with her second place finish at the 2012 Olympic Trials. Holliday did not pick up pole vault until the age of 16 after a completing a distinguished career in gymnastics, where she was a four-time state champion in the all-around category in 12-16 age group and a three-time regional champion. It did not take her long to establish herself as a national-caliber pole vaulter. She was ranked #7 in the U.S. at the end of the 2001 season, in which she placed 5th at USA Outdoors and 8th at the World University Games. Continue reading