Junior Park Ranger Program

Become a Junior Park Ranger

The Erie County Park System is pleased to offer our self-guided, Junior Ranger program for visitors ages 4 to 104. The Junior Ranger program is a way to introduce children and all those who are young at heart to the wonderful recreational opportunities available on a year round basis at our various county parks. Numerous activities can be enjoyed in natural environmental areas that showcase the beauty of these destinations.

Start by obtaining an Erie County Park System Passport. These free guides to our Erie County Parks can be picked up at designated pick-up points within select parks or ask one of our Park Rangers for a passport. You may also download the brochure and print it double-sided to create the passport at home.

Once completed passports have been approved and it has been determined the requirements have been met, Junior Park Ranger certificates will be mailed to each Junior Park Ranger, with a ceremony honoring all of the 2018 Junior Park Rangers to be held at Chestnut Ridge Park sometime in the fall.

Explore Our Parks

To become a Junior Park Ranger, you must:

  • Visit all four (4) Undeveloped Parks (Boston Forest, Eighteen Mile Creek, Franklin Gulf, and Hunters Creek) and the Bureau of Forestry. Use the coordinates listed on that parks page to locate and record the code in your passport book
  • Visit any five (5) additional parks and use the coordinates listed for that parks page to locate and record the code in your passport book
  • Describe one plant or animal species you identified in one of the parks and include the species' scientific name
  • Describe one cool thing you did, observed, or learned in one of the Erie County parks that you visited
  • Optional: Find and talk to a Park Ranger in one of the parks

At each park you will locate a special "Park Code" that you can record inside your passport. Hints, "maps," and geographic coordinates of where the Park Code is located within each park can be found on these pages:

Test your memory of the parks with our tile-matching memory game!

Apply for Your Junior Park Ranger Certificate

Complete the process by filling out your Junior Park Ranger Application, or visit our Department of Parks, Recreation and Forestry office located inside the Rath Building (95 Franklin Street in Buffalo).

Fill out the Junior Park Ranger Application online