All the ‘Parks and Recreation’ Easter Eggs You Missed in ‘The Good Place’

Avid fans of the television show Parks and Recreation may have been keen on spotting all the Easter eggs sprinkled throughout The Good Place series. However, if you weren’t watching closely, you may have missed them altogether. What were some of the top Easter eggs Michael Schur sprinkled into The Good Place that gave a nod to Parks and Recreation?   

Looking inside the mind of Michael Schur

Schur, the co-creator of the television shows Parks and Recreation and The Good Place, is a 44-year-old television producer, writer, and actor. Schur grew up in Michigan and earned a B.A. in English from Harvard University before making his way to Hollywood. 

Schur’s series Parks and Recreation ran from 2009 until 2015. The series is set around the life of Leslie Knope, played by Amy Poehler.

Leslie is the deputy director of the parks and recreation department in the fictional town of Pawnee, Indiana. The sitcom depicts the ups and downs of Leslie’s personal and professional life. Nick Offerman, Aubrey Plaza, and Chris Pratt also star in the show.

The sitcom The Good Place ran from 2016 until 2020. The series follows Eleanor Shellstrop, played by Kristen Bell, as she finds herself in the afterlife.

Eleanor feels like she’s in the wrong place, but throughout the series realizes that it’s never too late to shed her old way of life and discover a new one, even if it is in the afterlife. William Jackson Harper, Jameela Jamil, D’Arcy Carden, Manny Jacinto, and Ted Danson also star in the series.

A clear overlap between the two sitcoms 

With Schur being the co-creator in both of these shows, he was able to sprinkle in little Easter eggs from Parks and Recreation into The Good Place. Along with the Easter eggs sprinkled throughout the series, there is a clear overlap in the actors and actresses that played in both shows. Some of the key actors and actresses that played in both series were Bell, Marc Evan Jackson, and Maribeth Monroe. 

Kristen Bell starred in The Good Place and played a minor role in Parks and Recreation as a councilwoman named Ingrid de Forest for three episodes. Marc Evan Jackson played Shawn in The Good Place and appeared as an attorney named Trevor Nelsson in Parks and Recreation. Maribeth Monroe played a Pawnee citizen known as Elise Yarktin in Parks and Recreation before landing the role of Mindy St. Claire on The Good Place.

Along with sharing some notable actors, The Good Place made several subtle references to the Parks and Recreation universe.

Hiding some Easter eggs 

Ron Swanson
Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson on NBC’s Parks and Recreation | Colleen Hayes/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Schur and the writing crew were subtle in their delivery, making several cheeky references to the Parks and Recreation world in The Good Place script. However, some were more noticeable than others. 

One Easter egg that was easy to pick up on was The Good Place’s reference to The Swanson Safe Company. On two separate occasions, the series showed Swanson Company safes. The integration of these safes into The Good Place universe was a clear nod to the Parks and Recreation character, Ron Swanson.

A second significant nod to the Parks and Recreation series in The Good Place was the appearance of Lil’ Sebastian. The miniature horse was a beloved pet in Pawnee that sadly passed away in the Parks and Recreation series. The good news for fans was that they got to see Lil’ Sebastian again, existing peaceful in The Good Place

Schur sprinkled in a few more Easter eggs for fans to discover throughout The Good Place too. Schur has said that he likes to sprinkle in these Easter eggs in his various works just because it’s fun for him, and it gives fans something to enjoy.