Jr. RangerLand began in the spring of 2009 when Jennifer Haywood and her family traveled to The Great Smoky Mountains National Park. While there, her kids participated in the Junior Ranger program. It was a terrific experience and they all learned many things about the park in the process. Before leaving, they investigated a visitor center gift shop to purchase a memento of the trip and saw an opportunity for a series of games to continue the Junior Ranger experience at home. On the drive back to Michigan, their family worked together to create the first Jr. RangerLand board game. This version was drawn in the backseat by their 8-year-old daughter. Over the following months, Jr. RangerLand was born.