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!”
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.
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
“It was one of the greatest things that ever happened to her,” said author Grant Overstake. “The whole experience was simply awesome.”
They say everything’s bigger in Texas and this event was no exception. The USA Track and Field Sanctioned Event featured four vault runways! There were exactly 300 participants, and 301 if you count one fictional vaulter from Grain Valley, Kan.
A copy of Overstake’s inspirational sports novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon was presented to champions in each female division. In addition, a special “Maggie Award” was presented to Adolph Hoffman of Summersett, Texas, who jumped a new Age 90 World Record of 6-0 at the event! (See Full Results Here)
The invitation to Come on down! to the Texas River Championships came from Jon Johnson, President of the event and a coach of one the nation’s premier clubs, Lone Star Pole Vaulting. He says awarding copies of Maggie will inspire the female vaulters to continue on their own quests, over the moon.
View More Photos! Continue reading
Boosted by enthusiastic reader recommendations and online sales, the popular teen novel Maggie Vaults Over the Moon continues to soar as a best-seller at Watermark Books & Cafe, the region’s No. 1 bookstore.
Listed among works by writers such as Khaled Hosseini (The Kite Runner, And the Mountains Echoed), Maggie ranks 10th on the Watermark Books Best-Sellers list as of June 16, 2013. The novel has soared to as high as No. 3 in recent months.
“It’s been amazing and exciting to see how readers of all ages have responded to Maggie,” says author Grant Overstake. Continue reading
Maggie Vaults Over the Moon has found a place on the bookshelves of Kansas history.
The Kansas-based teen sports novel has been placed among the Kansas Reference books in the Wulfmeyer Special Collections (Lower Floor) of the Wichita Public Library. The special permanent collection consists of books about Kansas, or books by Kansas authors, including both fiction and non-fiction.
And, now, the collection includes the inspiring story of a gutsy farm girl from Grain Valley, Kansas, who overcomes great difficulties through the daring sport of pole-vaulting. Continue reading
Thanks to Shannon Clark of I Run Read Teach for an Awesome Review:
You know that saying — “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? Well, it applies to this book. Most definitely! Grant Overstake, the author, contacted me about reading his book and reviewing it on my blog. I am so glad I did.
It’s a young adult book that’s appropriate for young adults as well as 4th and up. When do you ever find a young adult book like that? Some words that would best describe it would be- PURE, WHOLESOME, GENUINE -those can also describe Maggie, the main character.
Not an inappropriate word throughout the entire book. No inappropriate content either. I mean that’s a hard find in today’s world! It’s one of the most pure and wholesome young adult books I’ve ever read. Continue reading
NEW UPDATE ON THIS STORY FROM ERICA (10/16/14): “I’ve had great success in the last year as well! Devin King broke the national indoor record, got 4th at world juniors, and cleared 18 ft twice as a high school kid. Two of my high school junior boys jumped over 16 ft, and Madison jumped 13’3″. And, I got married! What a fun year!”
UPDATE (6/27/13): Congrats to former Olympian Erica Bartolina for being selected to coach Team USA vaulters at the World Youth Championships in Ukraine! Erica is one of the sport’s most inspirational athletes and best coaches. Her own vaulter, Devin King, will lead the squad as the US World Youth Trials champion.
If you’re ever fortunate enough to travel waaay down to southeast Louisiana, deep into Cajun Country, you’ll find one of the most beautiful places on the entire planet to pole vault.Nestled under mossy trees east of Baton Rouge lies the awesome training facility of Bartolina Athletics. Here boys and girls of all ages and abilities can be found on the runway, day and night, launching themselves to greater and greater heights.
The vaulters at Bartolina Athletics are taking the same flight path as their coach, Erica Fraley [Bartolina], who competed for the USA in the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Her love and knowledge of the event motivates them to achieve their goals and learn positive life lessons along the way.
And, her athletes are also following the same trajectory as the fictional heroine Maggie Steele in Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.
The new teen sports novel by Grant Overstake has been widely endorsed by pole-vaulters for its realistic depiction of the world’s greatest sport; and by others who identify with the heroine’s courageous struggle. Kirkus Reviews calls Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, “A fine novel about perseverance in sports and in life.”
Along with sharing her own remarkable story, Coach Bartolina recently used the book’s heroine to help inspire her vaulters. Both Bartolina, in real life, and Steele, as a fictional character, overcame great adversity as they vaulted themselves over the moon. Continue reading