Oklahoma Selfbow Society

OJAM (Oklahoma Selfbow Jamboree)

The annual Oklahoma Selfbow Society Jamboree, or "OJAM", was created to pass along the skills necessary to build and shoot traditional bows, thus preserving the heritage of primitive archery. This is our public teaching event. OJAM is open to the public, but membership in the Oklahoma Selfbow Society (OSS) is required for anyone wishing to receive help with building a bow. OSS activities, including OJAM, are funded through membership fees and the support of our members.


Who can attend?

OJAM is open to the public, but membership in the Oklahoma Selfbow Society (OSS) is required for anyone wishing to receive help with building a bow. OSS activities, including OJAM, are funded through membership fees and the support of our members. Applications for membership may be submitted here.

How do I register?

The event is free and preregistration is not required. However, for safety and insurance reasons, everyone attending the event must register upon arrival at the registration booth (see map). This is also where you will be assigned to a camp - if you are building a bow. You can expedite your time at registration by bringing a completed liability waver to the event. 

Where do I park?

All vehicles must be park in the designated parking area (see map). Vehicles parked in restricted areas are subject to being towed. The speed limit is 10 mph on the campground loops.

What materials or equipment will I need?

The OSS does not supply bow staves or tools. If you are building a bow, you will need the following:

Bow stave
If you have never built a bow before, you should wait to purchase a stave from an OJAM vendor with the help of your assigned Yellow or Red Hat. Depending on the type of wood, a stave can run from $50 to $100. Wood must be well seasoned (8-10% moisture content). If you have built bows previously, it is a good idea to bring your own stave as vendors will have a limited number of staves for sale at OJAM.

Drawknife, Rasp, Scraper blade

The basic tools for bow building include a drawknife, rasp and scraper blade. If you want to build bows, it is best to come with at least these three items. Some of the Yellow and Red Hats will have tools available to borrow - but they will be limited and wait time will be significant. Vendors will have a limited amount of these for sale at OJAM.

Who will teach me how to build a bow?

Registrants will be assigned to OSS Bowyers (Yellow Hats and Red Hats) who will be teaching classes for those wishing to build a bow. OSS Membership is required to participate in a bow building class or to use the power tools. Power tool use subject to the OSS Power Tool Usage Policy.

Where can I stay?

Camping: Tent camping is $5 per tent per night. Camping sites do not have electricity or water. Camping is allowed in designated areas only! RV Camping sites are limited and made by reservation - first come, first serve. (Contact Rodney Wilson @ (405) 747-7776 to reserve). RV campsites have water and electric hookups. Each campsite has its own picnic table and fire ring. Campfires are allowed unless the area is under a burn ban. (All fires must be in a designated fire ring). Restrooms will be located at various areas of beaver cove. Showers will be available at trailhead and store facilities. Trash dumpsters on site.

Hotel: The entrance to the park is approximately 5 miles from the city of Stillwater where hotels are available.

Will there be food?

Yes! Scout Troops 77 & 6077 will have meals available for sale daily. See menu.

Can I bring my whole family?

Yes! OJAM is an event for the whole family. Our primary goal, as far as the OSS is considered, is to pass on the heritage and art of bow building, arrow smithing, and flint Knapping. To accomplish this, we have came up with a system that works for us. We like to place individuals with a group of teachers (accomplished bowyers - Yellow and Red Hats) in a camp to receive one on one instruction. We ask that all bow builders become a member of the Oklahoma Selfbow Society. Individual membership is $25, family membership is $35, corporate membership is $100, and youth is $10. Read more about OJAM Kids here.

Can I bring my pet?

Pets are allowed only in the attendee’s campsite and must be kept on a leash at all times. Do not walk around with your pet. Please think twice about bringing your pet if they tend to be loud and/or aggressive. (No excessive barkers please!)

What else is there to do at OJAM besides build a bow?

Demonstrations: From 8am-Noon Thursday through Friday, skilled bowyers will be leading demonstrations you won't want to miss!

3D Course: There is a 25-target 3D range setup. Kids must be accompanied by an adult at all times on the range. The cost is $5 per round or $20 for a weekend pass. Kids 12 and under are free. So don’t forget to bring your archery gear!

Fishing: Back this year - fishing is allowed! When you register, you will get a wrist band from us which will allow you to participate in all things Lake Carl Blackwell. This means you do not have to purchase a separate fishing permit to fish the Lake. Anyone 16 or older must have a valid Oklahoma fishing license. Some popular species of fish in the lake are Channel catfish, crappie, saugeye, hybrid striped bass, and largemouth bass. So bring your fishing gear!

Shopping: Go check out all the neat vendors. There will be all kinds of stuff for sale! Items such as archery gear, arrows, clothing, food and snacks and all kinds of treasures!

Flintknapping: There will be a flintknapping area where you can observe knappers throughout the event. If you have any interest in flintknapping or learning more about it, most people there would be willing to help you get started. Come Saturday to watch knappers compete to make the best point they can out of a piece of toilet (Johnstone).

Hiking: Lake Carl Blackwell has plenty of hiking opportunities. See interactive trail map.

Lake Carl Blackwell OJAM Map

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