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Funny Campfire Stories

How to Create Your Own

We love telling funny campfire stories! We have always told stories to our children at bedtime. Telling stories around the campfire is even more special!


Here's how to start your own family tradition of telling stories around the campfire.

Parent-invented funny campfire stories

The best campfire stories for kids are the ones that you make up yourself. All children love to hear stories about themselves!

When you are feeling creative, you can start with just about anything, and a story will come flowing out.

"Once day a little boy named ____________ found a rock. He decided to pick it up and use it to…."

small boy carrying rock

The stories don't have to be masterpieces! Your children will be captivated with whatever you create - as long as they are the main characters.

How about "When _______ climbed to the top of a huge tree, he was surprised to find….."

boy wearing life jacket climbing tree

Sometimes, though, the creative juices don't flow and coming up with a story is harder.

That's when you need the techniques I describe below.

Use these storytelling devices to get the ideas started and to get everyone involved.

Around-the-circle funny campfire stories

The "stop at the good part" story

Begin telling a story about anything you like. You don't have to have a great or fancy idea. Just start.

When you run out of ideas - or when you get to a suspenseful point - stop.

The person beside you takes over.

Continue around the circle until everyone has had a few turns, or until the story comes to an end.

Story starters

Here are a few ideas to get you started - but remember, the best stories are the ones custom-designed by you and your family.

  • "One day I noticed that there was something in my pocket. I reached in. Imagine my surprise when I pulled out a .........."
  • "(Your child's name) was walking down a nature trail at (name of campground) when she heard a strange sound. S/he looked up and saw...."
  • "It was suppertime at camp. ___________ was getting ready to make a pot of soup. S/he opened the cooler - and out jumped a tiny ..."

people around the campfire


  • Allow group members to pass if they want. Younger or shyer children may prefer just to listen, especially the first few times you play this. That's fine! Pretty soon, everyone will be eager to take a turn.
  • Be aware of the personalities and moods of your children. Don't allow the stories to be spooky if that will scare some of your listeners. It's no fun for anyone if a child is too scared to get into the tent at bedtime!

The "one word at a time" story

This technique is similar - except that each person contributes just one word!

You'll probably start it out with "Once". The next three people will most likely contribute "upon" "a" and "time". After that, it's anyone's guess!

Soon you'll all be laughing at the silliness you have created!


  • This is an ideal activity if you have shy or hesitant members in your group. It's not very threatening to come up with just one word!
  • When it is your turn, don't think too hard - just spit out a word that makes sense so that the momentum of the story keeps up. You will all be surprised at how the story develops!

Need some help?

Sometimes you just don't feel creative! You'd rather read or tell a story that already exists.

Memorize a story.

 Here are some good short campfire ghost stories that you can easily learn to tell.

Read a story.

This is one of our favorite books of scary (but not too scary) stories for children.

The bottom line

One of the best parts about camping is the time and space to have fun with those you love, away from the distractions of everyday life.

Telling funny campfire stories together is a great way to create warm feelings of family togetherness.

Now that you know how to tell funny campfire stories, click here to learn about campfire cooking, songs, games and more.

Before you plan your next camping trip, be sure to visit The Camping Family home page. You'll find all sorts of great ideas!

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