NPS, UP, NPF Release New Junior Ranger Railroad Program

Written by Andrew Corselli
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The National Park Service (NPS), Union Pacific (UP) and the National Park Foundation (NPF) released the Junior Ranger Railroad Explorer activity booklet, which can be obtained for free from

The new educational booklet traces the journey of the first transcontinental railroad and aims to bring the rich history of railroads to life in a fun and engaging way. The Junior Ranger Railroad Explorer is one of many Junior Ranger programs available online. Each program is an intergenerational learning experience that focuses on a site or theme tied to public lands.

NPF also supports the Junior Ranger “Let’s Go Fishing!” activity booklet. Both of these Junior Ranger programs are part of NPF’s broader mission to connect people to and protect national parks.

“Among the people who contributed to the development of the transcontinental railroad were Chinese immigrants,” NPS said in a joint press release. “As we honor Asian and Pacific Islander American Heritage Month throughout May, this new booklet serves as another educational resource that pays tribute to the generations of Asian Americans who impacted our country’s history.”

For more information about the Junior Ranger Railroad Explorer program and to download a copy of the booklet, visit this link.

“Get ready to ride the rails from coast to coast and learn how the transcontinental railroad impacted the country,” said National Park Service Deputy Director David Vela, exercising the authority of the Director. “The program’s creative activities provide insight to the technology, challenges, people, and transformation associated with the iron horse.”

“Railroad Explorer is a great way to track the history of trains, and you can do the fun activities at home with friends and family,” said National Park Foundation President and CEO Will Shafroth. “Thanks to the support of Union Pacific, this new Junior Ranger program engages kids of all ages with the multi-faceted and multi-cultural story of the meeting of the rails.”

“Children of all ages are naturally intrigued by trains, but the Railroad Explorer book helps them understand how the railroad connected the nation 150 years ago, changing the way Americans live, eat and travel,” said UP Senior Vice President of Corporate Relations and Chief Administrative Officer Scott Moore. “While gaining an appreciation for rail history and our national parks, Railroad Junior Rangers will also learn to always keep safety in mind—never walk on or near the tracks, and only cross at designated locations.”

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