Casting Parks and Rec characters as dog breeds

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PARKS AND RECREATION — Pictured: “Parks and Recreation” keyart — (Photo by: NBC)

We decided to cast Parks and Rec characters as dog breeds.

As one of our projects for the month of April, since March 31 came and went, we decided to cast Parks and Rec characters as dog breeds, something the show itself partially did in one episode.

Why does March 31 have anything to do with anything? Because, as the episode “94 Meetings” (2.18) explains, April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza) scheduled all of her boss Ron Swanson’s (Nick Offerman) meetings for March 31, because she didn’t know it existed. It’s since become an unofficial holiday for the fandom. (The first time I – Wesley – watched this episode, it was March 31, which I also didn’t know existed.)

If you aren’t familiar with Parks and Recreation, here’s a quick summary: Created by Mike Schur and Greg Daniels (creators of The Office,  Brooklyn 99 and The Good Place), it was an NBC mockumentary sitcom than ran from 2009 to 2015, taking place in-universe from 2008/09 to 2017, with flashforwards going all the way to 2048. It mainly took place in the City Hall of the fictional medium/small southern Indiana city of Pawnee, centering around the employees of the Parks and Recreation Department, though a few people from other departments were featured as well.

The main cast included Amy Poehler (Leslie Knope), Rashida Jones (Ann Perkins), Nick Offerman (Ron), Aziz Ansari (Tom Haverford), Aubrey Plaza (April), Chris Pratt (Andy Dwyer), Rob Lowe (Chris Traeger), Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt), Jim O’Heir (Jerry Gergich) and Retta (Donna Meagle).

Outside of the show itself, several tie-in materials were created in addition to the typical show merch of coffee mugs and T-shirts. These include Ann’s blog and several other websites and an extensively-researched history of the city of Pawnee written by Leslie.

Since dogs aren’t typically allowed inside government buildings, there aren’t a whole lot of dogs that appear throughout the series, though Andy and April adopt a three-legged Pit Bull rescue dog named Champion, who tags along on adventures whenever possible.

The show did cast some Parks and Rec characters as dog breeds as the C plot in the episode “Fluoride” (6.07). For the others, I talked it over with my friend and fellow Parks and Rec fanatic Elizabeth to arrive at these estimates.

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