'Parks and Recreation' Cast Reuniting for One-Time Scripted Coronavirus Benefit Special

The coronavirus is about to get Jammed. NBC is putting together a special Parks and Recreation reunion with the entire original cast, if they can look away from their waffles for just a minute, to help raise funds for Feeding America's COVID-19 Response Fund. The half-hour special will be filmed from the actors' homes, meaning Tammy 2 is likely going to interrupt Ron Swanson's appearance. The Parks and Recreation Special will air on Thursday, April 30 at 8:30 p.m. ET.

Amy Poehler will be back to play Leslie Knope, with Nick Offerman back as Ron Swanson and Rashida Jones as Ann Perkins. Aziz Ansari is coming back as Tom Haverford. Chris Pratt (Andy Dwyer), Aubrey Plaza (April Ludgate), Rob Lowe (Chris Traeger), Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt), Retta (Donna Meagle) and Jim O'Heir (Garry, Jerry, Larry, Terry and Barry Gingrich) will also take part. NBC teased that "several guest stars" from the Pawnee universe might also show up.

The plot for the new episode finds Leslie trying to stay in touch with her best friends while social distancing. Original series showrunner Mike Schur confirmed he wrote the episode with Dave King, Aisha Muharrar, Matt Murray, Megan Amram, Jen Statsky and Joe Mande. "Produced by a lot of people working very hard under impossible circumstances. All for charity," Schur added on Twitter.

"Like a lot of other people, we were looking for ways to help and felt that bringing these characters back for a night could raise some money," Schur added in a statement. "I sent a hopeful email to the cast and they all got back to me within 45 minutes. Our old Parks and Rec team has put together one more 30-minute slice of (quarantined) Pawnee life and we hope everyone enjoys it. And donates!"

"In such uncertain times, we can't think of anyone better than Leslie Knope to unite our country with her unbridled enthusiasm and compassion," Lisa Katz and Tracey Pakosta, Co-Presidents of Scripted Programming, NBC Entertainment, added. "A huge thank you to Mike Schur and the cast of Parks and Recreation for putting this wonderful special together and bringing a smile to all our faces while raising money for such a worthwhile cause."


The special is a fundraiser for Feeding America, which set up a special response fund to help food banks during the coronavirus. State Farm, Subaru of America and the team behind Parks and Recreation will donate a total of $500,000 in matching donations through May 21.

Parks and Recreation originally aired on NBC from 2009 to 2015 and is now available on Netflix. The series was created by Schur and The Office's Greg Daniels, and gained a dedicated fanbase. Poehler won a Golden Globe for her performance in 2014 and earned Emmy nominations for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series every year from 2010 to 2015. That's more recognition than William Henry Harrison ever got.