If you were looking for the article about the song, then see Campfire Song Song.

"The Camping Episode" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season three. In this episode, SpongeBob and Patrick go camping on SpongeBob's front lawn, to Squidward's dismay.



Squidward is in his house preparing for bed as he looks forward to a weekend of peace and quiet, especially with SpongeBob and Patrick deciding to go camping. However, he is extremely exasperated and disappointed to learn that they are camping in SpongeBob's front yard, right outside his window.

The Camping Episode 024

Squidward camping with SpongeBob and Patrick

Squidward confronts SpongeBob and Patrick in their tent, pointing out they can't be "camping" if they are only ten feet away from SpongeBob's house. SpongeBob simply states it doesn't matter where you camp as long as you're in the wilderness. After getting the impression that the duo believe Squidward isn't manly or qualified enough to camp, he impulsively decides to join SpongeBob and Patrick in their "camping." Squidward attempts to demonstrate "real camping" as SpongeBob and Patrick take notes, but fails to set up his automated tent, so he decides to sleep under the stars.

The gang begins roasting marshmallows while imitating astronauts. Squidward dismisses them and plans to get a can opener from his house so he can eat a can of Swedish Barnacle Balls. However, SpongeBob stops him from doing so, saying that "it just doesn't seem to fit the camping spirit." Squidward grudgingly decides to eat the marshmallows, but Patrick repeatedly blows on his burned ones, sending them flying into Squidward's face. SpongeBob then plays the "Campfire Song Song." Squidward dislikes it and begins playing "Kumbayah" very badly on his clarinet. Suddenly, a terrified SpongeBob stops Squidward by shooting a marshmallow through his clarinet and into his windpipe, causing him to choke.

After Squidward recovers, he yells at SpongeBob for hurting him. SpongeBob claims that it's not safe to play the clarinet badly in the wilderness at night, as he might attract a sea bear. Squidward angrily protests that sea bears don't exist but SpongeBob and Patrick insist they're real, showing various newspaper articles as proof. Squidward attempts to disprove their existence by having SpongeBob and Patrick list all the things which supposedly attract sea bears, such as eating cheese cubes, wearing a hoop skirt and clown shoes, waving a flashlight, etc. He then begins doing all these actions at once, despite SpongeBob and Patrick's pleas. SpongeBob quickly draws an "anti-sea-bear circle" in the dirt to protect himself and Patrick.

057b - The Camping Episode (547)

Sea bear attacks Squidward.

Squidward then gloats how a sea bear hasn't arrived, to which SpongeBob explains he forgot one thing: wearing a sombrero in a "goofy fashion". Just then, a real sea bear appears and demonstrates how the hat should be worn, much to Squidward's horror. The bear mauls the shocked Squidward before leaving. SpongeBob and Patrick urge Squidward to jump into their circle, but he is skeptical of this and tries to flee, only to be attacked by the sea bear again for various reasons.

After being attacked for the sixth time, SpongeBob concludes the sea bear simply doesn't like Squidward. After failing to draw his own anti-sea-bear circle, Squidward finally leaps into SpongeBob and Patrick's. When the sea-bear appears again, it notices Squidward is now in the circle and growls at him in warning for now being safe, before leaving the area. Squidward is relieved the creature is finally gone and thanks SpongeBob and Patrick for saving his life as the trio celebrate.

Sea rhinoceros

Squidward about to get mauled by Sea Rhino.

SpongeBob mentions they're lucky to not be attacked by a sea rhinoceros. Hearing this, Squidward fearfully asks what attracts them, to which Patrick replies, "The sound of a sea bear attack." A sea rhinoceros then appears and growls at Squidward. SpongeBob remarks how lucky they all are to be wearing anti-sea rhinoceros undergarments, except for Squidward, who doesn't have a pair on, causing him to whimper in resignation and fear.





 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Tom Fool - Van Phillips [title card]
  Lonely Heart's Club (a) - David Bell, Otto Sieben [SpongeBob and Patrick camping ten feet from SpongeBob's house]
  Tomfoolery - David Snell [Squidward joins them]
  Andy Anorak - Chris Marshall [roasting marshmallows]
  Campfire Song Song - Dan Povenmire, Jay Lender
  Kumbayah - Brad Carow [Squidward playing clarinet]
  Dramatic Cue (b) - Ronald Hanmer ["Oh, no! I'll save you, Squidward!"]
  House of Horror Parts 1 & 2 - W. Merrick Farran [SpongeBob warns Squidward about sea bears (Part 1)/SpongeBob and Patrick tell Squidward what attracts sea bears. (Part 2)]
  Co Co Baby (a) - Gil Flat [Squidward doing everything that attracts sea bears]
  Dangerous A - Mladen Franko [Sea bear appears.]
  Dangerous C - Mladen Franko [First time Sea Bear attacks Squidward/Second time Sea Bear attacks Squidward/Third time Sea Bear attacks Squidward/Fourth time Sea Bear attacks Squidward/Fifth time Sea Bear attacks Squidward/Sixth time Sea Bear attacks Squidward]
  Dangerous A - Mladen Franko [sea bear growls at Squidward]
  Hula Festival - George Elliott [ending]



"I always laugh even though I know the sea bear attacks are coming. By the way, SpongeBob singing the ever-accelerating verses of "The Campfire SONG Song" is NOT artificially sped up. (People always ask about that!)"



  • This episode premiered on the same day as the 2004 Kids' Choice Awards.
  • This episode was originally going to be called "Squid Gets Mauled," but was then changed to "The Camping Episode."[3][4][5][6]
  • This is the second episode where Patrick is left-handed. When he is writing down how to set up a tent he is writing with his left hand, but in other episodes he is right-handed. The first episode to show Patrick as a lefty is "Jellyfishing."
  • This episode takes place on Saturday, May 25th. This episode either takes place in 2002, 2013, 2019, or 2024 as May 25th fell on a Saturday in those years.
  • In the episode "Idiot Box," Squidward wears the same sombrero when he looks for a box and asks, "Why haven't I worn this yet?"
  • Things Squidward does that attracts the sea bear:
    • Plays the clarinet badly.
    • Waves a flashlight back and forth really fast.
    • Stomps on the ground.
    • Eats cubed cheese.
    • Wears a sombrero in a goofy fashion.
    • Wears a hoop skirt.
    • Wears clown shoes.
    • Screeches like a chimpanzee.
  • The "Campfire Song Song" is heard in the Family Guy episode "Road to Rupert," in which Peter Griffin watches the episode's scene where SpongeBob and Patrick sing the song. The song was written by Dan Povenmire, who was also a director on that Family Guy episode. Because of this, he was able to gain the rights to his own song.
    • Unlike the SpongeBob version, Squidward is not in it.
  • This is the last episode Dan Povenmire worked on.
  • In the February 14, 2018 airing, it was paired up with "Valentine's Day."[citation needed]
SpongeBob Theme HD
  • In the "Campfire Song Song," the part where SpongeBob bounces on the letters is a reference to the show's theme song.
  • The marshmallow cannot go through the clarinet that easily because the reed is smaller than the marshmallow itself.
  • There is an online game based on the sea bear attack called Camping Chaos!
  • In the Indonesian version, on the line where SpongeBob asked Squidward about can openers, it is instead turned into asking him about sea bears.[citation needed]
    • Also, the "Campfire Song Song" was originally cut due to time constraints and longer ad breaks before this episode begin, though in recent airings, the song is occasionally included.
    • Patrick's line "It may be stupid, but it's also dumb!" is changed to "This may sound stupid and even preposterous!"
    • SpongeBob's line "Good thing we're all wearing our anti-sea-rhinoceros undergarments." is changed to "Good thing the rhinoceros isn't around here."
  • The part where SpongeBob says, "I met this guy who knew this guy..." has become a popular internet meme.
    • In Indonesia, instead of saying "I met this guy who knew this guy...," SpongeBob says "I met this guy who knew his cousin..."[citation needed]
  • In the French dub, the "Campfire Song Song" is left untranslated with the exception of "Oh, yeah!"[citation needed]
  • According to The Tom Kenny Collection, the description he gives for this episode revealed that he sang the "Campfire Song Song" very speedily during the recording session. When SpongeBob sings fast, it was purely Tom Kenny, it was not edited to be fast. There were no artificial speed filters used, thus revealing that Tom Kenny can sing very speedily.
  • This is the only episode Sam Henderson wrote where he is not a storyboard director.
  • In the Polish dub, the episode's title is "Biwak w dziczy," which translates to "Camping in the Wilds."
  • This is one of the rare times where SpongeBob tells Squidward that he is terrible at the clarinet.

Cultural references


  • When Squidward looks at his cup of tea while in bed, the wrinkles on his forehead are gone. When he looks at his book, they reappear, but when he imitates SpongeBob's laugh, his wrinkles are gone again.
    The Camping Episode 010

    Squidward's wrinkles are missing.

  • After Squidward unsuccessfully assembles his tent, when the scene shows the ground by his feet again, his backpack is gone.
  • When SpongeBob starts the song, he is sitting on a log. When he sits back down, the log is gone.
  • When the sea rhinoceros snorts, one of the bubble groups stops in mid air.
  • When Squidward tries to set up his tent, he rips it. After the tent is put up, the rip is gone.
  • The last time Patrick blows his marshmallow, he does not put it in the fire.
  • When the sea bear attacks Squidward for the first time, he is shown with bandages on his arms and legs. In the next scene, they disappear, only showing an arm cast. In the end, they reappear.
  • Although SpongeBob tells Squidward to chew the marshmallow that was lodged in his throat, the whole marshmallow is seen going down his esophagus.

    Molten marshmallows on Squidward's face

  • The molten marshmallow mess looks far too similar to chocolate-chip cookie dough.
  • In the French dub, after Squidward chews the marshmallow, there is about a three-second pause on Squidward with no dialogue before SpongeBob says "Meilleur," which means "Better" in French.
    Polish 20200215 063449433

    SpongeBob's disconnected arm.

  • While starting to sing the song, SpongeBob's left arm gets disconnected from his body for a frame.

Running gags

  • The sea bear mauling Squidward off-screen.



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