The Great Outdoors



What goes on around your campfires? What goes on around other campers’ campfires? What would you like to do around your campfires? Think about it; JUST WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO AROUND YOUR CAMPFIRE? It’s a perfect time to spend with family and friends. You might discover hidden talents in those you thought you knew.

You’ve all seen old Gene Autry and Roy Rogers movies where at the end of the day, after catching bank robbers, cattle rustlers, and shooting the guns out of umpteen gun slingers’ hands, Gene and/or Roy along with the Riders of the Purple Sage, or the Sons Of The Pioneers gather around the campfire and sing songs like Tumbling Tumble Weed, Back In The Saddle Again, Happy Trails To You, or Cool Clear Water.

I often wondered where they got all that wood for their campfires out there in the desert and from out of nowhere someone always produced a coffee pot. Oh well, they did have a campfire and they did sing songs and ole Roy or Gene did rope tricks and pulled jokes on each other, usually on the comic relief -AKA- Fuzzy Knight, Cannonball Taylor, Fuzzy St. John, Smiley Burnett, or Pat Buttrum (sp).

The Boy Scouts like to do skits, act out ‘plays’ of sorts, and sing camp songs around their campfires especially around the campfire at summer camp. In fact there are several books on how to do skits and songs that are easily learned just for doing around campfires. Don’t forget; there may be someone of the group that likes to play a guitar, whistle, fiddle, or play a harmonica. Encourage them to play even if it’s a set of bagpipes.

Check with your local library branch or you might even find some books on skits and songs on the Internet. Start now and look up some songs that everyone likes and maybe knows and write the words down on paper and make copies to hand out at the campfire. HINT: Country Roads is a good campfire song and you don’t have to be from West Virginia to enjoy it.

Call Janice at the AWAC office (432-9593) and ask her if she has any Boy Scout song books in stock. She may have some other books of interest that you could use dealing with campfire skits.

Humorous skits can be easily adapted from the jokes that are found in the Readers’ Digest. Appoint a couple of other ‘song leaders’ to help you and I’ll bet your campfires will be the talk of the group for months to come. I know that when my own two scouts came home from summer camp you could hear them whistling and singing camp songs for weeks after. Oh and why not have a contest on who has the best (and loudest) patrol yell but do it long before lights out.

Appoint another group of two to three people to come up with snacks to be served during your song breaks. Besides packaged snacks there are always things like S’mores, marshmallows, popcorn, pudgy pies, hot dogs, thumb print bread, fudge making, and Dutch oven pizza to add to the list. Have everyone chip in to pay for the food and have a good time.

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Ray McCune

He has lived in Waynedale for over 45 years. He has taken to his lifelong dream of being a full time Outdoor Freelance Writer and author. Ray has authored one book and has written Kampfire Kookin' as well as other outdoors articles for the newspaper. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer