Parks and Recreation: Season 3 (2011)


Season 3
Parks and Recreation

Critics Consensus

Parks and Recreation's cast finally feels complete with the delightful additions of Rob Lowe and Adam Scott in a romantic third season that fully fleshes out Pawnee as an amusingly retrograde microcosm of America.



Critic Ratings: 23


Audience Score

User Ratings: 538

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Air date: Jan 20, 2011

Season 3 opens as Leslie enlists Ann's help in persuading state auditors Chris (Rob Lowe) and Ben (Adam Scott) to give the Parks Department more money. Elsewhere, Ron and Andy start coaching youth basketball; and April returns with some surprising news.

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Air date: Jan 27, 2011

The flu hits Pawnee, sending Leslie to the hospital and interrupting her preparations for the local Harvest Festival. Elsewhere, Ron and Andy do some male bonding, while Tom spends the day at the spa.

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Air date: Feb 3, 2011

Leslie wants to bury a Pawnee time capsule, but an odd suggestion from a local man (Will Forte) causes unforeseen consequences. Meanwhile, Andy seeks Chris's advice on how to win back April.

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Air date: Feb 10, 2011

Tom gets revenge on Ron by going out with Ron's ex-wife, Tammy (Megan Mullally). Meanwhile, April is assigned to work with Chris.

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Air date: Feb 17, 2011

Ben is forced to face his past as a teen mayor while doing interviews to promote the upcoming Harvest Festival. Elsewhere, Andy tries win back April's affection.

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Air date: Feb 24, 2011

Ron and Leslie head to Indianapolis, where they'll be recognized for their work on the upcoming Harvest Festival. Back in Pawnee, Tom hosts a launch party for a local cologne maker, hoping to pitch his own idea for a fragrance; and a cash-strapped Andy and April find ways to have fun without spending any money.

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Air date: Mar 17, 2011

The fate of the Parks Department rests on the success of the Harvest Festival, which is plagued by last-minute problems, including a Wamapoke tribal leader who threatens to put a curse on the event.

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Air date: Mar 24, 2011

Leslie plans a camping trip for the whole department; Chris is appointed city manager of Pawnee; Andy attempts a romantic gesture for April.

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Air date: Apr 14, 2011

Ben seeks career advice from Leslie; April and Andy host a dinner party for all their friends; Ann attends a singles party.

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Air date: Apr 21, 2011

Leslie joins an Internet dating site, only to be matched with someone she already knows. Meanwhile, Chris kicks off a health initiative and challenges Ron to a burger cook-off.

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Parks and Recreation: Season 3 Photos

Tv Season Info

Eternally optimistic government employee Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) sets her sights on a new goal in series 3: revitalizing the town of Pawnee by throwing a harvest festival. Meanwhile, there's love in the air for just about everyone in the cast: Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones) begins dating health-conscious city manager Chris Traeger (Rob Lowe); April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza) and Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) enter into a whirlwind romance; and Leslie falls for Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott), despite the fact that as coworkers, they aren't allowed to date.


News & Interviews for Parks and Recreation: Season 3

Critic Reviews for Parks and Recreation Season 3

All Critics (23) | Top Critics (13)

[Leslie Knope] navigates an endless sea of local bureaucracy with an impossible perkiness crossing into obliviousness. She should be irritating as sin -- but she's not. Poehler is so honest that it doesn't matter.

Oct 9, 2019 | Full Review…

The first episode of Parks and Recreation's third season was called "Go Big or Go Home." This season has more than lived up to that title, offering the funniest, sweetest, most consistent sitcom on television.

Oct 9, 2019 | Full Review…

Amy Poehler, as lead funny person Leslie Knope, does absurdist comedy as well as anyone on TV, and she's a pleasure to watch.

Jan 20, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The cast is phenomenal, the writing inventive and genuinely funny, and you could pick just about any character and almost mistake them for the show lead instead of Poehler.

Jan 20, 2011 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
Top Critic

"Parks" has been much aided by the arrival of Rob Lowe as the most ebullient accountant ever... Yet from the dialogue to the pacing there is still a feeling Parks does not know whether it wants to be The Office or Arrested Development.

Oct 10, 2019 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Began its life as a pale imitation of The Office, but has evolved into one of the funniest sitcoms on either side of the Atlantic: a warm and witty mockumentary that never slips into maudlin sentimentality.

Oct 10, 2019 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

To steal some verbiage from the show's earnestly lovable lunkhead Andy Dwyer, "Parks and Rec" is awesomesauce.

Oct 10, 2019 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

There's no denying the chemistry this cast has, and the sheer brilliance in writing delivered in every single episode.

Oct 10, 2019 | Full Review…

A triumph of many things: great casting, sharp writing, but most of all it was a triumph of tone. When the show was at its best, Parks & Rec mastered a kind of feel-good comedy that felt neither condescending nor brainless.

Oct 9, 2019 | Full Review…

A sweet, hilarious triumph, and aside from a few dangling strands at the beginning of the year, the Pawnee gang was able to pull it all together and pull off TV sitcom "basics" in a wildly fun and inventive manner.

Oct 9, 2019 | Rating: 9/10 | Full Review…

Its ensemble of excellently realized characters is as deep as Newsradio's and Arrested Development's... This cast is about as close to perfect as you'll find on TV.

Oct 9, 2019 | Rating: 9.5/10 | Full Review…

It's a gentle blend of silliness and quasi middle-American reality, enjoyable without the intellectual work it takes to keep up with the rapid-fire clever-joke rate of the other NBC Thursday standouts.

Oct 9, 2019 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Parks and Recreation: Season 3

  • Sep 05, 2020
    It's up to Leslie Knope to save the Parks Department in Season 3 of Parks and Recreation. With the town broke and the government shutdown, Leslie comes up with an audacious plan to get out of bankruptcy by reviving the old Harvest Festival. Adam Scott and Rob Lowe join the cast and bring new energy to the show, mixing up the character dynamics. Also, the reduction to 16-episodes helps to make the storytelling a little tighter and it's more serialized. No longer a pseudo Office spin-off , Parks and Recreation comes into its own in Season 3, finding the right mix of characters and cementing its style of comedy.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Jul 08, 2020
    Awesomesauce! This show gets better and better. The show is genuinely funny and oh-so sweet. Quite a step up from The Office. Amy Poehler is a fantastic lead. April and Andy are hilarious and charming, instead of becoming boring and uncomfortable after getting married, they become sweeter and more lovely. Probably because of both the fantastic script as well as Aubrey Plaza and Chris Pratt's undeniable chemistry. The relationship building between Leslie and Ben is flawless. This is quite possibly the best show in comedy history.
  • May 09, 2020
    The characters Chris Traeger and Ben Wyatt Makes the third season one of the best.
  • Apr 12, 2020
    The best season of Parks and Recreation so far!
  • Mar 14, 2020
    I can't sit here an tell you this season isn't not going to be amazing but I can give you this advice : Crying only acceptable at funerals and the grand canyon
  • Jan 24, 2020
    With adding Rob Lowe and Adam Scott, Season 3 gets even better than the last two. With great characters such as, Amazing Leslie Knope, Serious (yet funny) Ron Swanson, Swaggered Tom Havorford, Gothic April Ludgate, Sassy Donna Meagle, Innocent Gary "Jerry" Gergich, Positive Chris Traeger, and Nerdy Ben Wyatt. You'll love this season of Parks And Rec!
  • Jan 04, 2020
    Must watch and probably one of the best seasons of the series it's incredibly funny and the humor in it is genius
  • Nov 11, 2019
    Brilliant. Hilarity, romance, and heart at it's best. My grade: A+
  • Jan 10, 2019
  • Nov 17, 2018
    I have watched this show through over 10 times and I still laugh every time, it's truly perfection.

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