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Fun Campfire Songs

Stephanie was a scout leader for many years. She believes there is nothing like a campfire song to draw us together

Campfire Songs: The Stuff Memories are Made Of

If you've ever been camping with family, friends, scouts or religious organizations, you'll be familiar with songs sung around a campfire at the end of the day. Why sing songs? There are so many reasons, the primary one of which it is a bonding experience. Linking arms, raising voices and fondly remembering the day that has just passed. Years later, campers will recall the wonderful memories - whether with family or friends. Sometimes, you'll roast marshmallows and crack peanut shells, while chatting about a hike or a swim. Other times, it may be just the cap of the experience of getting to camp and setting up. In any event, camp songs have a long, fond tradition. There is nothing like fun campfire songs!

Songs can be sung a capella (without accompaniment), or with guitar. There are so many fun campfire songs from which to choose, I've highlighted just a few. Leave me comments below with some of your favorites, too!

A cozy campfire and a song

A cozy campfire and a song

My first selection of fun campfire songs is "Puff the Magic Dragon." Yes, there are definite drug implications with this song (or so they say), but it is a campfire tradition, nonetheless. Let's not spoil it for our younger audience of kids 10 and under. A charming song of a boy and his dragon, the tale is sung by boys and girls at camp, year after year. Honah Lee, is actually an area in Kauai, Hawaii, which is said to be the foundation for the song.

Puff the Magic Dragon, by the Mommas & the Poppas

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee,

Little Jackie paper loved that rascal puff,

And brought him strings and sealing wax and other fancy stuff. oh

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee,

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee.

Together they would travel on a boat with billowed sail

Jackie kept a lookout perched on puffs gigantic tail,

Noble kings and princes would bow wheneer they came,

Pirate ships would lower their flag when puff roared out his name. oh!

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee,

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee.

A dragon lives forever but not so little boys

Painted wings and giant rings make way for other toys.

One grey night it happened, jackie paper came no more

And puff that mighty dragon, he ceased his fearless roar.

His head was bent in sorrow, green scales fell like rain,

Puff no longer went to play along the cherry lane.

Without his life-long friend, puff could not be brave,

So puff that mighty dragon sadly slipped into his cave. oh!

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee,

Puff, the magic dragon lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called honah lee

The Magical Honah Lee from Puff the Magic Dragon

The Magical Honah Lee from Puff the Magic Dragon

Other Campfire Song Favorites

  • Boom, Boom, Ain't it Great to be Crazy?
  • Kookaburra
  • Camptown Races
  • The Hokey Pokey
  • The More We Are Together
  • Where Have All the Flowers Gone?
  • Dry Bones
  • Amazing Grace
  • I Know a Place
All that you need are some fun campfire songs!

All that you need are some fun campfire songs!

Even Adults Enjoy Singing Around Campfires!

Yellow Submarine: A Great Campfire Song

OK, so the Beatles are also maybe not the best role model for youth, but again, its "Yellow Submarine" is a charming song, and so... sing-able. The chorus is completely uplifting and, let's not forget, back in the 1970s, it was the subject of a cartoon! This song would be good for campers near the ocean, who are learning about sea life.

Everyone, sing together... "We all live in a Yellow Submarine, a Yellow Submarine, a Yellow Submarine!" I love it! Plus, it was created the year I was born (1968), so it has to be a hit.

Yellow Submarine, by the Beatles

(Excerpt)

In the town where I was born,

Lived a man who sailed to sea,

And he told us of his life,

In the land of submarines,

So we sailed on to the sun,

Till we found a sea of green,

And we lived beneath the waves,

In our yellow submarine,

We all live in a yellow submarine,

yellow submarine, yellow submarine,

We all live in a yellow submarine,

yellow submarine, yellow submarine.

And our friends are all aboard,

Many more of them live next door,

And the band begins to play.

In the town where I was born,

Lived a man who sailed to sea,

And he told us of his life,

In the land of submarines,

So we sailed on to the sun,

Till we found a sea of green,

And we lived beneath the waves,

In our yellow submarine,

We all live in a yellow submarine,

yellow submarine, yellow submarine,

We all live in a yellow submarine,

yellow submarine, yellow submarine.

And our friends are all aboard,

Many more of them live next door,

And the band begins to play.

The Bugler's Cry - Taps

Taps: Campfire Song for the End of the Day

Taps is a total tearjerker for me. And while it is certainly not a fun campfire song, it is often listened to around the campfire while a bugler in the distance plays the song. The words are haunting, nonetheless. And, the story is quite amazing. It is said to have originated during the Civil War, although some say it is but a myth. A Union soldier heard agonized cries of a wounded man across enemy lines. He simply could not take it and snuck across to help the poor soul. Imagine his surprise when he discovered that it was his own son! The boy died in his arms. The man requested a military funeral for his son, but was denied because the boy was considered to be a traitor. Out of compassion, he was allowed a single bugler, instead of a full military band. The bugler played the tune found in his son's coat pocket. Thus, "Taps" was born.

Lyrics for Taps:

Day is done,

gone the sun,

From the hills,

from the lake,

From the skies.

All is well,

safely rest,

God is nigh.

Go to sleep,

peaceful sleep,

May the soldier

or sailor,

God keep.

On the land

or the deep,

Safe in sleep.

Love, good night,

Must thou go,

When the day,

And the night

Need thee so?

All is well.

Speedeth all

To their rest.

Fades the light;

And afar

Goeth day,

And the stars

Shineth bright,

Fare thee well;

Day has gone,

Night is on.

Thanks and praise,

For our days,

'Neath the sun,

Neath the stars,

'Neath the sky,

As we go,

This we know,

God is nigh

Scouts Love this Classic Campfire Song

Silver and Gold: Make New Friends

This is one short and sweet song that is easy to remember! Sing it together first, then in a round:

Make new friends, but keep the old

One is Silver and the Other Gold!

There are so many other classics, there simply is not enough room here to review them all in one place! Before your next camping excursion, collect some campfire song books, maybe a harmonica or guitar, and prepare for some special memories to be made.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2008 Stephanie Marshall

Comments

Amy DeMarco from Chicago on November 03, 2011:

Great songs!! Made me want to go camping.

jerandi from Salt Lake City, Utah. USA on October 12, 2011:

Time for some camping

crayonfox on March 29, 2011:

some suggestions, 'there was a great big moose' 'the hippo song' and 'the camp fire song song' (yes there are two 'song's

m.tariq899xxvv on December 12, 2010:

I love it.

Thank you.

Scarlett My Dear from Missouri on November 11, 2010:

These are a few of my favorite things. Thank you for the added video clips. Love it!

Person on June 11, 2010:

go scouts camp songs

Debbie Gee from California on May 11, 2010:

Where are the marshmellows, please! And I'll take a hot dog and cheeseburger :) Yummmy!

Martin Goldrush on May 01, 2010:

puff the magic dragon was not written by the momma's and the poppa's. It was written and performed by Peter, Paul, and Mary. get your information right.

Stephanie Marshall (author) from Bend, Oregon on January 25, 2010:

Don't you know it! Ban the ghost stories - campfire songs are much more fun.

Gomet on January 25, 2010:

Very interesting Hub!

and No ghost stories should be allowed in camp night .. They Ruin every thing..

BealeD on August 22, 2009:

Great idea and great hub. How about a Ghost Stories follow- up? :)

Stephanie Marshall (author) from Bend, Oregon on March 30, 2009:

Yes, yes - I forgive you for not signing TAPS. Its a great song, but so sad.

mythbuster from Utopia, Oz, You Decide on March 30, 2009:

I didn't know the words for the "Taps" song before but after reading this hub, now I do. Sad words, indeed! Forgive me if I do not actually sing TAPS at the next campout I go to.

Katie on March 27, 2009:

Uh......boo!

earnestshub from Melbourne Australia on February 04, 2009:

Great hub Stephhicks68 I really miss camping. In Australia we "go bush" or "walkabout" as often as we can to see the sky again though clear air.

Watching the animals hurrying home in the evening and listening to the birds morning greetings is refreshing to the soul and spirit .

Camping Dan on February 04, 2009:

Great songs! Of course the only thing better than singing is telling scary ghost stories.

Stephanie Marshall (author) from Bend, Oregon on July 10, 2008:

OK - you got it! I am going to cub scout camp with my boys this weekend. I am sure to come back with fresh campfire song material. ;-)

imgoingonaroadtriptoNCwithmyyouthgroup on July 10, 2008:

u need 2 put more somgs! im going on a mission trip with my church to NC and were DRIVING! for 2 whole days! i need more!!!!!

topstuff on March 07, 2008:

Day is done,gone the sun.What's there behind,its now night.

Stephanie Marshall (author) from Bend, Oregon on March 06, 2008:

LOL - I love Meet the Parents! Let's go Camping everyone!

Wendy08 on March 06, 2008:

"Puff The Dragon" lol that was funny in "Meet the Parents". lol great hub steph. =D

Kiz Robinson from New Orleans, Louisiana on March 06, 2008:

Man, these make me want to go camping.

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