Parks and Recreation (TV Series 2009–2015) Poster



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Nick Offerman, who plays Ron Swanson, has a woodworking hobby as does his counterpart in the show. He has released an instructional DVD in canoe building and runs a fine woodworking business on the side.
Ron's second ex-wife ("Tammy Two") is played by Megan Mullally, who in her real life is married to Nick Offerman (Ron).
Ron Swanson's staunchly anti-government government official was based on a city planner who the show's producers met and interviewed when doing research. The planner was a Libertarian who admitted to them "I don't believe in the mission of my job."
Nick Offerman originally auditioned for the role of Mark Brendanawicz before being cast as Ron Swanson.
The character of April has a sister named Natalie. This is the name of Aubrey Plaza's real life teenage sister, who she uses as a source of inspiration when playing April.
Chris Pratt was originally scheduled to appear in only six episodes of the first season.
The character Tom Haverford changed his name from Darwish Sabir Ismael Gani. The actor who plays Tom, Aziz Ansari, chose that as Tom's original name because it is his cousin's name. Ansari also shares with Tom the biographical fact that although his parents were originally from India, he was born and raised in a small town in South Carolina.
In the the episode "London parts 1 & 2" Ben says to Andy "So all you did is stop drinking beer?" and Andy replies "Yea I lost like 50lbs in a month." This is a reference to Chris Pratt's real life weight loss for his role in Guardians of the Galaxy. He actually lost 60lbs.
The series was originally planned as a direct spin-off of The Office (2005). It was later re-designed to be an original workplace story that would keep the "mockumentary" format used for the other series, which P&R executive producers Greg Daniels and Michael Schur had both worked on (Daniels as creator, Schur as a writer and producer).
Pawnee Parks street map is a copy of the actual street map of Christchurch, New Zealand, with roads and other features renamed. For example Hagley Park, Christchurch is renamed Ramsett Park, and the Avon River which flows through central Christchurch is called the Pawnee River.
Jay Jackson, the actor who plays the comically literal Pawnee newscaster Perd Hapley, was for many years an actual print and broadcast journalist and anchor at news outlets in San Diego and Los Angeles. After he retired from journalism in the mid-2000s, through a friend's manager he got a small role as a reporter on a 2007 episode of Dexter. He agreed to allow the manager to send him on other auditions, but only as long as they only were for reporter roles, since that was his professional background, so he ended up also playing reporters on TV shows such as Scandal, Revenge, The Closer, The Mentalist, and Body of Proof, as well as in movies such as Battleship and Fast Five.
The writers didn't know Nick Offerman could already play the saxophone when they made his character, Ron Swanson, a secret saxophone player.
Six of the sixteen episodes of season 3 were filmed along with the 24 episodes of the second season because Amy Poehler was pregnant, so when the show was moved to mid season, the network ordered 10 more to have a complete season to air.
Amy Poehler suggested Louis C.K. for the role of Dave, even though the producers wanted a more typically good-looking actor for the role of a love interest.
During the series finale, during the Halloween scene, you can see a young boy dressed as Star-Lord (Chris Pratt's character in Guardians of the Galaxy)
The exterior shots of City Hall is Pasadena City Hall in California.
Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones left the show on good terms. The decision was mutual among them and the showrunners as their departure made sense for the characters and allowed the actors to move on to other projects. Jones, in particular, wanted to focus more on writing.
The green rectangular object on Ron Swanson's desk is a U.S. military M18A1 "Claymore" anti-personnel mine. It is notable for having the words FRONT TOWARDS ENEMY stamped on the front.
After shooting each scene a few times verbatim, the actors then shot a few more when they improvise to make the scene funnier if possible.
Nick Offerman (Ron) and Aubrey Plazza (April) share the same birthday, June 26
The rusty "sculpture" in Ron Swanson's office is actually a "Czech Hedgehog," a World War II anti-tank obstacle.
The exterior shot of J.J.'s Diner is actually Landmark Diner on Cheshire Bridge Road in Atlanta, Georgia.
The network gave the show an original order of 13 episodes, but Amy Poehler was pregnant, so only 6 episodes were finally produced.
Octavia Spencer auditioned for the role of Donna Meagle.
The idea for this program originally came from the Parks and Rec staff, specifically the lifeguard staff, in El Segundo, California.
While a guest on "The Diane Rehm Show," Rob Lowe said that when he first interviewed for the role of Chris Traeger, the Parks and Recreation writers told him that they had based their show on Lowe's previous series The West Wing. He said that they told him, "'we're comedy writers. We're going to write a comedy, but what would the comedy version of "The West Wing" look like?' And the answer to them was, it wouldn't be the White House. It would be Parks and Recreation."
Co-stars Nick Offerman and Rob Lowe starred together in one episode of The West Wing in 1999.
The two statues featured in the opening credits are two landmarks on Highway 18 in Montpelier, Indiana, a town located in the East-Central region of the state. The first is the Ice Cream Giant at Tin Lizzy, an ice cream shop just outside the town, and the second is the Muffler Man Indian in the center of town.
Thomas Lennon auditioned for the role of Ron Swanson.
Ellie Kemper auditioned for the role of Ann Perkins.
Mayfair Games, makers of Settlers of Catan, were contracted to make Ben Wyatt's Cones of Duneshire look like a professional board game. Instead, Mayfair Games made a playable game with a full set of rules. However, it's complex and dense, so it has not been produced for the market. It was played at GenCon 2014 in Indiana, where 33 people paid $100 each for a ticket to play and the Ledgerman position (the scorekeeper who doesn't play) was auctioned off. The event made more than $20,000 for an Indiana food bank.
Amy Poehler and Chris Pratt were named Harvard University's Hasty Pudding Club's Woman and Man of the Year in 2015.
At least eleven tie-in websites exist for the show, including websites for Pawnee, Leslie's city council campaign, Andy's band's, Ron's grilling, April and Andy's wedding, and Tom's businesses. Ann's tumblr also exists.
Ben Schwartz originally auditioned for the role of Dave Sanderson before being later cast in the different role of Jean-Ralphio Saperstein.
The gag reels on the DVDs contain fake commercials, including ones for Tom's Bistro, Rent-a-Swag, Jamm's Orthodontics, and classic Perd episodes.
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Amy Poehler is the only actor to appear in every single episode of the series.
One of the show's creators, Michael Schur, often appears in the background as an extra.
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Adam Scott who plays 'Ben Wyatt' and Kathryn Hahn who plays 'Jennifer Barkley' also appear in the same film "Step Brothers".
Pawnee was founded in 1817, which is likely a reference to the founding of the University of Michigan, located in Ann Arbor, the home town of one of the show's creators Michael Schur. There are also several other references to the city of Ann Arbor throughout the show.
Matt Walsh and Mike O'Malley auditioned for the role of Ron Swanson. Walsh would later guest star as Leonard Tchulm and O'Malley would guest star as Bill Butler.
Along with Nick Offerman (Ron) and Kathryn Hahn (Jennifer), Kevin Dorff (Derek) also appears in 'We're The Millers'.
Kulap Vilaysack auditioned for the role of April Ludgate and later guest starred as Ulani.
Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt), Kathryn Hahn (Jennifer ), Paul Rudd (Bobby Newport), and Rashida Jones (Anne Perkins) all starred in the movie, Our Idiot Brother (2011), together.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

After Mark Brendanawicz leaves at the end of season 2 he is never mentioned again.
Paul Schneider claims that his character changed a lot from season 1 to season 2, so he wasn't surprised when Mark was written out at the end of season 2.
Leslie's pregnancy with triplets was foreshadowed in season 2 episode 4 when she goes on a date with Will Arnett's character who gives her an MRI scan. He comments on how she has 'a great oven' and said " If I were you, triplets right off tha bat."
Andy's son is named Jack, the same name as Chris Pratt's real son Jack Pratt.
In the episode "Sweetums", Nick Newport Jr. is shown. He is not mentioned again through the remainder of the series. When Nick Newport Sr.'s son runs for city council against Leslie, his name is Bobby Newport. Nick Sr. and his wife also are in the show several times with no mention of Nick Jr.
Throughout the series, Ron can be seen sitting at this desk drawing squares on every other line in a notebook.
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In season two Leslie goes on a date with Will Arnet and he gives her a cat scan and tells her she has a nice utterus and could spit out triplets on her first go. That's what in fact happens when Ben and Leslie finally have children.
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