Ahh, summer camp. There’s no better way to make kids appreciate the creature comforts of home than by forcing them to spend a few weeks living in the wilderness. Summer camp has been a tradition for some families for decades, and over the years, little has changed. You can still count on numerous bug bites and unexplained rashes, frigid lake water, pointless arts and crafts time, a cruel social pecking order, and terrifying tales being told around a smoldering campfire.
But it’s not all bad, right? Some of it makes you a stronger person. In fact, many in the haunt industry can trace their love of horror back to the scary stories they heard around the campfire. Here are few classics:
The Bleeding Tree
Hundreds of years ago in these very woods, a young settler met a native girl and instantly fell in love. Knowing that their interracial romance was forbidden, they kept their love a secret. One day, a nosey neighbor followed the young lad into the woods, and observed the couple embracing. Their secret out, they were soon captured by the authorities.
As punishment, they were tied to this mighty oak that sits by our campsite, brutally stabbed, and left for dead. Days later, when relatives came to retrieve their bodies, there was nothing to be found. No one knows what happened to their remains, but they say on some nights, the lovers’ tree still bleeds and howls in agony.
A couple driving home late at night spots a hitchhiker on the side of the road. As they approach they see it is a young girl, and pull over to help. She calmly tells them where she’s headed and they offer her a ride. She sits in the backseat, staring straight ahead, completely motionless. The couple attempts to engage her in conversation, but she remains speechless. Soon, they pull up to a house at the address she had given them. They turn to look in the back seat, and she has completely vanished.
Startled they approach the home and knock on the door. They are greeted by a sorrowful looking old woman. They ask if she’s seen the little girl. She replies, “No, but my daughter was killed in a car accident on this road, 30 years ago to this day.”
Two young lovers, Nate and Karen, are getting hot and heavy up at makeout point, when an urgent newsflash comes over the radio. A psycho killer has escaped from a nearby asylum. With a hook for a hand, and standing over six and a half feet tall, this murderer is a force to be reckoned with. Nate assures Karen that it’s nothing to worry about, locks the doors, and tries to pick up with they left off.
Karen isn’t having any of it, though. She gives him a firm “no,” and tells him to take her home right now. Nate is pissed, but complies with her demands. He quickly turns the key, slams on the gas, and peels out of the parking lot. Soon, they arrive at Karen’s house. As she opens her door, she notices an object hanging off the door handle; a metal hook, covered in blood.
Spread Terror to a New Generation
Are you a camp counselor, scout leader, or chaperon on a camping trip? Passing these bone-chilling tales to a younger generation is your duty as an adult. Team up with an accomplice wearing a shockingly-realistic Halloween mask from The Horror Dome, and have them jump out from the woods right as your ghastly tale comes to a climax. It will be a major fright your campers will never forget!