“Archery has become so popular in schools, you know, in after-school programs, beacon programs, those types of activities they have really gotten into shooting a lot of archery.”
OKMULGEE, Oklahoma – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Agricultural Youth Archery Camp returns after a successful year in 2021. The camp is accessible to all nine year old and older students and features cultural activities, 3D targets, Native longbow shooting, stationary targets, and fishing.
The camp is hosted in collaboration with the MCN Division of Agricultural & Natural Resources, MCN Conservation District and the Okmulgee County Extension Office.
Last year’s camp was the first time it had been hosted in three years. Event organizers anticipated 25, maybe 30 students to sign up. The actual number was closer to 75.
According to MCN Agricultural Youth Program Director Billy Haltom, his phone was ringing off the hook this past spring about whether the Archery Camp was returning. Haltom received calls from places as far as Pouteau and Moore.
“Archery has become so popular in schools. You know in after-school programs, beacon programs, those types of activities they have really gotten into shooting a lot of archery.” Haltom said.
The event is a great way to reach students who might not be engaged in other programs or activities. “They might not be athletes. They might not be FFA members, it kind of draws a group of young people that might not be standing out in a school system, so to speak,” Haltom said. “We get a different group of kids, we get a bunch of them, and they’re really just looking for an opportunity or chance to showcase what they can do.”
Archers will be grouped with peers in their skill level at the camp. The skill levels of camp participants range from novice to advanced. According to Haltom, the camp has seen skilled archers who own their equipment and beginners who may have never picked up a bow before.
Haltom’s favorite aspect of the camp is the people it draws and the hard work that goes into hosting it. “When it’s all over, and we’re all just sitting around smiling at each other looking and saying ‘Look at the wonderful job we’ve done,'” Haltom said.
The camp will be found in a new location, the Looped Square Ranch in Okmulgee. This will allow for more space for courses and targets.
Registration will close once the number of signed-up participants reaches 100. According to Haltom, the camp can not safely accommodate students above that quantity.
The Archery Camp will be held July 12 from 9 AM-2 PM. Lunch and snacks will be provided.
The pre-registration deadline to receive a free T-shirt is June 24.
Registration can be completed by mail, email, or phone call. Contact Billy Haltom at (918) 732-7628 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.