Maggie Vaults Over the Moon

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Storybook Maggie Celebrates 7 Years Over the Moon!

Vaulters celebrated with Maggie at the Gold Medal Pole Vault Camp in Andale, Kan., 2013. Youngsters who were teens when the book was published are in their 20s today.

GRAIN VALLEY, Kan. — A lot has happened in the world of pole-vaulting in the past seven years, and storybook heroine Maggie Steele has been there.

Published Oct. 12, 2013, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is a classic story in the pole-vault community.

Published October 12, 2012, the young adult novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon celebrates it’s 7th year today. The saga has become the gold-medal story of the sport, earning praise for it’s positive message for young teens, especially girls.

“It’s amazing to think that youngsters who were 13 when the book came out are 20 today!” said author Grant Overstake.

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon has stood the test of time as a story that defines grit and perseverance, which is what this great sport is all about.”

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is the magical story of Maggie Steele, a gritty Kansas farm girl who rebounds after tragedy and reaches new heights as a pole-vaulter. Kirkus Reviews calls it, “A fine young adult novel about perseverance in sports and in life.” The story also was voted the No. 1 Athlete Girl Book on Goodreads, and named national Book of the Week by Bookworks Publishers Weekly.

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New PR! Maggie Hits 16,000 Views!

Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow! All-American Masters Pole-Vaulter Claire Overstake, co-founder of Go Team Enterprises, celebrates 16,000 page views on Maggie's blog!

Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow! Masters Pole-Vaulter Claire Overstake, co-founder of Go Team Enterprises, celebrates 16,000 page views on Maggie’s blog!

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Maggie Celebrates 1st Anniversary with Olympic Greats and Future Greats at Doctoberfest 2013!


Bell Athletics’ Kayla Caldwell won the female division of Doctoberfest 2013.

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.

(Click here to view all Doctoberfest 2013 photos).

Doctoberfest was an opportunity for Tailwind Pole Vault Club members to watch, dream, and soar.

Doctoberfest was an opportunity for Tailwind members to watch, dream, and soar.

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

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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

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Maggie’s Eagles Soar at City League Meet

Bishop Carroll senior and future KU Jayhawk, Nick Meyer soared to victory in the Wichita City League Championship.

The Sunflower State’s top pole-vaulter, Nick Meyer, Bishop Carroll senior and future KU Jayhawk, won the Wichita City League Championship.

Congrats to Maggie’s pole-vaulting friends Caitlin Hawk (10-8) and Nick Meyer (16-2) of Bishop Carroll HS for soaring to gold medals at the Wichita City League Meet!

The high-flying Golden Eagles, coached by Denis Fraizer, are big fans of the teen novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, which captures the excitement of the world’s greatest sport.

Maggie says, “Way to go Caitlin and Nick! And best wishes to all Kansas HS pole-vaulters in the next few weeks. Knowing the Highest and Best for you at Regionals and State!” Continue reading

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Watch: Author Shares Remarkable Stories About ‘Maggie Vaults Over the Moon’


Writing is often thought of as a lonely vigil, but Grant Overstake, author of Maggie Vaults over the Moon, found this not to be true. In this Keyhole Conversations interview, he acknowledges those people who helped him along the way.The interview was conducted at The Inn at Glenstrae, a beautiful bed and breakfast located in the Sleepy Hollow section of Wichita. Click here to watch Bonnie Myrick’s interview at Keyhole Conversations.

Keyhole Conversations interview of author Grant Overstake was recorded at the beautiful Inn at Glenstrae in Wichita.

Keyhole Conversations’ interview of author Grant Overstake was recorded at the Inn at Glenstrae in Wichita.

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Do You Feel Yourself Soaring With Maggie? Science Explains Why

Kansas High School State Champion Taylor Marie Swanson felt herself soaring again reading "Maggie Vaults Over the Moon."

Kansas High School State Champion Taylor Marie Swanson felt herself soaring to a gold medal again reading “Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.”

If you feel yourself taking flight with heroine Maggie Steele as she pole-vaults over the moon, don’t be surprised.

Many readers of the new teen novel Maggie Vaults Over the Moon have actually felt the physical sensation of vaulting higher and higher — and a new study explains why.

According to the article, “Your Brain on Fiction”, something amazing happens to our brain when we simply read about fictional characters doing exciting and dramatic things. Our brain responds like we’re really doing those things ourselves. The study shows that when Maggie takes flight, readers do, too.

Maggie Vaults Over the MoonWriting for The New York Times, Annie Murphy Paul reports that, while many people today are fixated with digital devices and spending most of their free time on Facebook or Twitter, new evidence shows we could all benefit from putting away our smart phones and reading good fiction.

According to the story, scientists have come to realize that, to the brain, a fictional account can seem even more real than the real world: Continue reading

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New Teen Sports Novel Captures Life On Kansas Family Farm

The new teen sports novel “Maggie Vaults Over the Moon” vividly depicts the challenges and joys of a girl living on a family farm in rural Kansas.

WICHITA, Kan. — A former rural newspaper editor and sports writer has drawn upon his coverage of sporting events and country life to create a new teen sports novel, which is harvesting praise for its realistic view of life on a Kansas family farm.

Author Grant Overstake says his years spent as a journalist embedded in Kansas wheat country helped him create a vivid setting for the story,  Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, in which a high school senior named Maggie Steele struggles with the same difficult decision faced by many of today’s rural teens — pursue the life of her dreams or stay home to save the multigenerational family farm.

 “As the only surviving child, Maggie has many factors to consider about a possible future on the farm,” Overstake said. “Of course, readers will have to read the story to follow her journey of self-discovery, and to see which path she chooses to take.”HighResFrontCover

As editor of the Hillsboro Star-Journal, Overstake was a two-time winner of the Kansas Farm Bureau’s Golden Wheat Award for excellence in agriculture writing. The author places his story near the fictional town of Grain Valley, Kan., which, in real life, could be anyplace where sports still matter and the grain elevator is the busiest place in town, especially at harvest time.

The new book, released in mid-October, has already earned several five-star reviews from readers on, including one that reads, “Getting to know Maggie Steele, her family, and the whole warm and caring community of Grain Valley was a pure delight…” Continue reading

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Doctoberfest Vaulters Win ‘Maggie Vaults Over the Moon’

Congratulations to the enthusiastic young pole-vaulters who scored copies of the new teen novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, during the Doctoberfest street vault held at the Tailwind Pole Vault Club. The winner’s names were drawn from the large number of vaulters and fans who attended the annual event on Oct. 6 in Jamestown, Kan.

Pole-vaulter Tristan Burnham, of Courtland, Kan., with Author Grant Overstake, left, and Tailwind Coach Mark Breault.

Pole-Vaulter Caitlin Hawk, of Wichita,Kan., with three-time Olympian and former world-record holder Earl Bell, left, and Author Grant Overstake. Bell, who coached three vaulters onto the US London Olympic Team, is the “coaching voice” in “Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.”

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Three-time Olympian Earl Bell is ‘Coaching Voice’ in “Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.”

While visiting an Asian rainforest, former world-record holder and Olympic great Earl Bell tries a real bamboo vaulting pole, just like Maggie Steele’s. Photo by Mark Breault, Tailwind Pole Vaulting Club

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