Maggie Vaults Over the Moon


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‘Mississippi Maggie’ Cheers Historic River Barge Vaulters!

It was a star-spangled day for NAME.

It was a high-flying day for Andrianna “Andy” Jacobs, who won the Youth Division with a vault of 13’4.25″, qualifying her for the USA Junior Nationals. While unofficial, the vault surpassed the Minnesota state record for high school girls. (Photos by Daniel Schraith.)

Paddle-wheels and pole-vaulters shared the Mighty Mississippi on July 4th at the LaCrosse River Vault. Adding to the excitement at the 6th annual event was the fact that it was the very first time that a pole-vault competition had ever been held on a river barge.

Cheering the vaulters was Maggie Steele, heroine of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.

Wowza! Soaring pole-vaulters captivated the crowd at the La Cross Street Vault on July 4th. (Photos by Daniel Schraith.)

Wow-za! Soaring vaulters captivate the crowd at the La Cross Street Vault.

“Maggie was delighted to be invited back to one of the best street vaults in the nation, or should I now say, the only barge vault in the world,” said author Grant Overstake. Copies of his YA novel were awarded to top finishers in each category. He added, “It was a happy, historic day for everyone involved.

“Kudos to Jeremiah Burish and his crew for putting on a great, great show!”

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Maggie to Join the Fireworks at La Crosse River Vault

'Maggie' will share the awards stand at the 6th annual La Crosse River Vault.

‘Maggie’ will share the awards stand at the La Crosse River Vault Saturday.

Fireworks will light up the sky this 4th of July and so will the pole-vaulters at the 6th Annual River Vault competition in La Crosse, Wis.

Elite champion Leslie Brost celebrates her payday with event organizer Jeremiah Burish.

Last year’s Elite champ Leslie Brost with Jeremiah Burish and Maggie.

Thousands of spectators are expected to watch some 65 athletes from all over the Midwest compete in six different categories Saturday. Joining in the patriotic celebration will be All-American Maggie Steele, the storybook heroine of the inspiring novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.

“Maggie’s delighted to be invited back to one of the best street vault events in the nation!” said author Grant Overstake.

Last year's Street Vault became a Vaulter Magazine calendar page. Shown: Masters vaulter Jamie Steffen, Fuzion Athletics.

Last year’s Street Vault became a Vaulter Magazine calendar page.

The River Vault takes place on the annual July 4th Riverfest, where upwards of 20,000 people gather to enjoy the many festivities, activities, and of course, delicious food. Riverfest is highlighted by a top-notch fireworks show in Riverside Park, making the River Vault a great event to watch while fest-goers stake out their seats early for the fireworks.

The runway will be set up in Riverside Park on the bank of the Mississippi River, which serves as a walking path and docking station for the paddle-wheeler boats that travel from Minneapolis to St. Louis.

The vaulting runway will be on a giant barge near the docking station for the paddle-wheeler boats that travel from Minneapolis to St. Louis.

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Take Flight this Summer with ‘Maggie’ on Audio!

AudiobookMonth2Thanks to superstar voice actress Tavia Gilbert, every month is Audiobook Appreciation Month here in Grain Valley, Kansas! To honor Tavia and all the awesome voice actors and actresses out there, we’ve been giving away Downpour.com downloads of Tavia’s performance of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon every week during June, which is officially Audiobook Appreciation Month.

TAVIATEASERLISTENNOWOur final-week winners are: Paul Paire of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania,  and Michelle Gard Wilgers of Wichita, Kansas!

Other winners Nick Vogt of Meadow Vista, California; Kay Hoch Metzinger of Eldorado, Kansas; Quinton Adrian Thomas of Newton, Kansas; and, Olympic pole-vault champion Allan Williams of London, United Kingdom.

Author Grant Overstake says, “Thanks to everyone who entered the contest! Audiobooks are more popular now than ever. If you’ve never listened, summertime is the perfect time to try one out. And, of course, you should start by soaring with ‘Maggie’ performed by Tavia Gilbert.”

A narrator known for her talent and passionate professionalism, Tavia Gilbert has voiced more than 300 titles, garnering the industry’s highest honors, including six Audie nominations and an assortment of Earphones Awards. She has received fabulous reviews for her performance of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon. Continue reading


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Celebrating Maggie’s 30,000th Blog Visitor!

30000VISITORS!

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


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Women’s Day Celebration Rewards Maggie’s Campaign with Bonus Funds, March 3-8!

Despite the fact that women were physically able to pole-vault, gender bias kept them grounded from athletic competitions. Shown: Pole vaulters  at University of Nebraska Lincoln 100 years ago during women's PE class.

Women have always been able to pole-vault, but gender bias kept them grounded from athletic competitions. Maggie Steele faces gender bias in her quest to vault over the moon.To honor her quest, Indigogo’s Women’s Day Celebration will honor Maggie’s Audiobook Campaign with bonus funds, March 3-8. (University of Nebraska PE class, 1914).

Storybook heroine Maggie Steele’s Audiobook Campaign has been selected to receive bonus funds during the International Women’s Day Celebration, March 3-8, to honor her inspiring message for young women and girls.

On Monday March 3rd, Maggie’s campaign will receive an extra dollar for every $25 raised on the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform. Indiegogo will also match $1 for every $25 raised on Saturday, March 8th.womensdayheaderInternational Women’s Day on Indiegogo celebrates the social, political and economic achievements of women while focusing world attention on areas requiring further action.

Inspiring Change is the 2014 theme for the celebration, which encourages advocacy for women’s advancement everywhere in every way. It calls for challenging the status quo for women’s equality and vigilance inspiring positive change.

Sponsors who believe in Maggie's story have stepped up to reward contributors to the campaign.

Sponsors who believe in Maggie’s story have stepped up to reward contributors to the campaign.

“I’m honored that Maggie’s campaign has been selected for the International Women’s Day Celebration,” said Grant Overstake, author of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon. “It’s a tribute to Maggie’s heroic character as a young woman and to female pole-vaulters everywhere. Challenging the status quo is one of Maggie’s strongest character traits.

“I want to encourage contributors to be sure to give on those dates so that we can maximize the total amount raised for the campaign and Maggie’s voice can be heard,” he added.

Narrator Tavia Gilbert will tell the story of Maggie Steele in the audiobook version of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.

Funds raised through the International Women’s Day Celebration will help narrator Tavia Gilbert perform and produce ‘Maggie Vaults Over the Moon’.

Maggie, a gusty farm girl from tiny Grain Valley, Kansas, is an inspiring new heroine in young adult fiction. Narrator Tavia Gilbert is eager to perform and produce the novel on audiobook. Her list of accolades includes six Audie Award nominations (the audiobook equivalent of the Academy Award). The campaign will cover Tavia’s expenses, and lift the sport of pole-vaulting to a new audience.

Gill Athletics, the world’s largest track and field equipment manufacturer, is proud to be the Grand Prize Sponsor of Maggie’s Audiobook Campaign. Additional sponsors for the 30-day event include: Artist Phillip Carrero, Dial Athletics, Fuzion Athletics, Raise the Bar Pole Vault Club, Rusty Shealy Pole Vault Club, Texas Pole Vault Club at Elitz Sports, Tailwind Pole Vault Club, and Vaulter Magazine. Continue reading


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Garden City’s Western Express Vaulters Celebrate a Great Season with ‘Maggie Awards’

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The Western Express Track Club celebrates a great season with Maggie Awards. Bottom Row, Left to Right: Natasha Covarrubias (Incoming MS Vaulter); Reyna Juache (Incoming MS Vaulter); Brooklyn Staats (MS Vaulter); Jade Denton (Incoming GCHS Vaulter); Hannah Schultz (Incoming GCHS Vaulter); Crystal Juache (Future MS Vaulter); Allison Arana (Incoming GCHS Vaulter); Kaitlin Smith (GCHS Vaulter); Taylor Linenberger (GCHS Vaulter); and Lourdis Covarrubias (GCHS Vaulter). Top Row, Left to Right: Jack Koehn (MS Vaulter); Stephen Dunlap (GCHS Manager); Dakota Brungardt (GCHS Vaulter); Brett Cady (GCCC Vaulter); Nick Juache (GCHS Vaulter); Austin Lubbers (GCHS Vaulter); Brian “Cookie” Rodriguez (Incoming GCHS Vaulter); Gustavo “Guz-Man” Bustos (Incoming GCHS Vaulter); and Coach Marcus Summers.

Coach Marcus Summers invited a special visitor to make a surprise appearance at the Western Express Track Club’s farewell practice of the summer on Monday, July 29th, in Garden City, Kan.

Western Express Track Club Coach Marcus Summers inspired his vaulters with 'Maggie Awards.'

Coach Marcus Summers inspires his vaulters with Maggie Awards.

The special guest was none other than the world’s most inspiring storybook pole-vaulter, Maggie Steele, who made the trip from her farm near Grain Valley in Southeast Kansas, waaay out west, to a city where Buffaloes stampede down the runway.

Coach Summers ordered multiple copies of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon to present to club members as inspirational Maggie Awards. The young adult novel tells the story of Maggie Steele, a gutsy farm girl who overcomes hardship and soars to new heights as a pole-vaulter.

buffaloes_garden_city_boys_varsity_basketball_winter_12-13The story has been endorsed by Olympians, coaches, teachers, and others who identify with the book’s inspiring message for young people.

Author Grant Overstake says Maggie was happy to visit Garden City!

Freshman Gustavo “Guz-Man” Bustos is one of several talented Western Express vaulters with promising futures.

Freshman Gustavo “Guz-Man” Bustos is a talented Western Express vaulter with a promising future.

“Maggie has been cheering for Western Express vaulters at track meets and street vaults all over the state this summer,” he added. “She was happy to congratulate the Buffalo vaulters and inspire them with her story.”

The hard-charging Buffalo is a fitting mascot for a herd of bold 11- to 18-year-olds who comprise one of the most successful vault clubs on the Kansas prairie. The new club has already made its mark, producing middle school league champs, high school state qualifiers and medalists, and college vaulters. Continue reading


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Maggie Soars Past 10,000 Visitors! Grandma says, ‘Let’s Have Pie!’

Maggie welcomed her 10,000th visitor on Sunday. Grandma said, “Let’s have pie!”

GRAIN VALLEY, Kan. — Grandma just knew that the 10,000th visitor to Maggie’s blog would appear sometime Sunday evening, so she baked one of her blue-ribbon rhubarb pies, and then she shoo-shooed Maggie and Troy away from the dinner table without dessert, until company arrived.

“The visitor counter climbed steadily from 9,950 to 9,999,” Maggie said, recalling the moment. “But then, it just froze there, not moving! It was at 9,999 forever!”

Maggie Vaults Over the MoonWith the 10,000th visitor due any second, the big question was, From where on earth would the 10,000th visitor arrive? 

Just as the clock struck seven on Sunday, July 21st, 2013, the answer came — the visitor was from, wait for it… Columbia, Missouri!

“Well isn’t that wonderful?” Grandma said, smiling sweetly. “Let’s have pie!”

Maggie and Troy and everybody else here in Grain Valley had a good laugh. It’s a knee-slapper because Kansans and Missourians have been big rivals since, like forever. Especially in sports. But not in pole-vaulting, because everybody knows that everyone who pole-vaults wants the highest and best for each other, no matter where they come from. It’s in the code.

10000_Worldwide“It was awesome to see that 10 followed by so many zeroes,” Maggie said. “It’s amazing to think how far we’ve come since, well, you know.”

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon tells the story of Maggie Steele, a gutsy Kansas farm girl who overcomes tragedy and soars to new heights as a pole-vaulter. The novel has been endorsed by US Olympic vaulters, coaches, and teachers who identify with its inspiring message for young people, and, most importantly, by young people themselves.

Since the novel was published in October 2012, Maggie has inspired readers all over the world. Continue reading