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5 Camp Fires
Council Fire
Week Program
Heart of the Camp
Ceremony from India
Mowgli Story
Oath Ceremony
Evening Pow Wows
Accounted For!
Scout Law
Story of Fire
Good Story Telling
Timber Wolf Ceremonies
Scout Yells
What To Do?
The Gray Areas
Philmont Song Book
Campfire Skits & Stunts
Scout War Songs

Scout Books

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By Talmage Chilson

This campfire  lighting ceremony is a splendid introduction for the Indian night at camp.  Each of the boys should come in a blanket with a feather in his hair and war paint daubed freely.  With a few feathers and a drum made from a cheese box they can work up some kind of a program.

The first year boys are the squaw men, the second year campers the braves, and the third, the warriors.  The council fire is built early in the day and at camp fire time the boys all come wrapped in their blankets and sit on three sides of the unlighted pile of wood.  All is very silent on this ceremonial night and the poem is read.   It is a plea for light to the Great Spirit as the poem draws to a close and as the fourth plea for light is made a ball of flame descends in answer from the heavens, floats to the wood and starts the council fire.  Boys in camp like this and it always gives them a great thrill.

Arrange for the ball of fire this way.  In the daytime when the fire is built up, place a heavy pole or  pipe in the center.  Fasten one end of a wire to the lower end of the pipe.  The other end of the wire may be fastened to a high tree or cliff or pole a little way from the council ring.  Place a roller on the upper end and hang securely a ball of oil-soaked waste or sack to it.  At the proper signal this ball is set on fire and released. It slides down the wire to the oil-soaked camp fire.

Care must be taken that the wire is not near any limbs or branches that might catch on fire.  Also place a guard near the fire so some ambitious camper will not try to light the fire with a match.  As the wire cannot be seen at night, the boys will get a thrill out of the ceremony and it will appear as if the Great Spirit has answered the plea for light.


0N the slopes of old Pike's Peak,
By the shining heaven lake waters,
Stands the camp of Warriors.
Dark behind it stands the forest,
Stand the aspen, spruce and pine,
Stand the fir, with cones upon them.
Bright below it runs the water
Runs the clear and shining water.

Here the chiefs and braves and warriors
Care for their faithful squaw-men,
Safely shelter them in teepees;
Care for hurts and ease their pains;
Drive away the blues and bring rejoicing;
Give them pep and youthful vigor
Ere they homeward wend their way.

Many things they do and learn there;
How the Great Spirit up above
Cares for all his faithful children
Cares for everything He fashions.
Learn they of the stars in heaven,
Of the birds that fly and nest there.
Learn their names and all their secrets;
How they build their nests in summer;
Where they hide themselves in winter.
Of all the beasts they learn their language,
Call them friends when'er they meet them.
How the moths and other insects
Change their forms and learn to fly;
How the flowers and trees and bushes
Get their names and all their odors;
All of this and more is taught them.

Oh, Great Spirit, then from heaven
Send us light and heat and warmth.
Give us courage, strength and daring;
Give us wisdom, manhood, patience
That from all Thy nature's secrets
We may learn their every lesson.
Learn to love, protect. and cherish
Everything Thy hand has fashioned.
Oh, Great Spirit, as a token
Send us light, this night we pray Thee

May we know that Thou art with us
That Thv warriors true we may be.
Send us light to light our camp fire,
That we may for this be thankful.
Oh, Great Spirit, this we ask Thee;
Send us light and we shall praise Thee.

Look, Oh warriors, braves and squaw-men,
See the light as light of morning
Which descends from heaven above us,
From our Father, the great loving spirit,
From our Father, who good will give us,
If we only wait and seek it.

Campfire Helps






Additional Information:

Peer- Level Topic Links:
5 Camp Fires ] Bibliography ] Firelight ] Council Fire ] Week Program ] Heart of the Camp ] Ceremony from India ] [ Invocation ] Mowgli Story ] Oath Ceremony ] Pantomime ] Pointers ] Evening Pow Wows ] Accounted For! ] Scout Law ] Story of Fire ] Good Story Telling ] Timber Wolf Ceremonies ] Traditions ] Scout Yells ] What To Do? ] The Gray Areas ] Philmont Song Book ] Campfire Skits & Stunts ] Scout War Songs ]

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Last modified: October 15, 2016.