'Maggie Vaults Over the Moon'


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Star-Spangled Vaulters Soar at River Vault

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Kaitlyn Ganrude navigates the barge runway at the River Vault. (By Daniel Scraith).

LA CROSSE, Wis. — Daring athletes in red, white and blue soared to new heights at the 7th Annual River Vault, held July 3-4.

A rubberized pole-vault runway and landing pad were mounted on a 125-foot by 50-foot barge moored to the river bank. The crowd went bonkers as nearly 80 athletes from Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, and Wisconsin soared above the river.

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Matt Dietlin waves to the crowd at the River Vault, held on the Mississippi River.

“What an amazing weekend!” said event organizer Jeremiah Burish, Director of Sales at La Crosse Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We had incredible competition, high energy, and great costumes. The vaulters rang the bell 24 times to celebrate their personal bests!”

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Smiling Sarah Ward rings the bell after a personal record vault.

Also cheering the competitors, in spirit, was Maggie Steele, the storybook heroine of the young adult novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.  In what has become a River Vault tradition, copies of the inspiring novel were awarded to winners in each category.

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Star-Spangled Anna Davis won the overall Best Dressed Vaulter Award.

“Maggie was delighted to be invited back to the only barge vault in the world,” said author Grant Overstake. “Kudos to Jeremiah and his crew for putting on another great show.” Continue reading


Maggie Salutes Star-Spangled Vaulters

Soaring in stars and stripes, Bryan Klister, clears the bar to win the college division of the 5th Annual River Vault in La Crosse, Wis.

Soaring in stars and stripes, Bryan Klister wins the River Vault college division.

LA CROSSE, Wisconsin — Fireworks were soaring here on the 4th of July, and so were the patriotic pole-vaulters at the 5th Annual River Vault competition held at beautiful Riverside Park on the Mississippi River.

The star-spangled event included some 65 athletes, including prep standouts, college All-Americans and national champions, elite stars, and Olympic hopefuls. According to event organizer and founder Jeremiah Burish, “This was our best River Vault yet!”

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

Elite champion Leslie Brost celebrates her payday with Jeremiah Burish and Maggie.

Joining in the fireworks was Maggie Steele, the storybook heroine of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon. Winners in each division (see complete results) were awarded a copy of the novel, written by Grant Overstake. Continue reading