Many films, TV shows, and books are set in real places, from Edith Wharton’s New York to Drew Carey’s Cleveland. Others take place in generic cities (Metropolis) or fake places you’d never want to visit (Sin City). But, reading Juliet Lapidos’s thoughtful analysis of Leslie Knope’s politics on Parks and Recreation at Slate, it occurred to us that there are a whole lot of fictional towns we’d love to visit — including Pawnee. Our top ten are after the jump.
Here’s how much Pawnee, IN wants to be a real city: It has its own, adorably lo-fi website that comes up before the real city of Pawnee, OK when you Google “Pawnee.” Sure, it is supposedly the epicenter of America’s obesity crisis. But it’s also home to a wonderful yearly Harvest Festival, a handful of hilarious bars, and the hardest-working person in government, one Leslie Knope. From Tom Haverford’s grating poseurism to April Ludgate’s dead-eyed apathy to Ron Swanson’s rugged libertarianism, Pawnee’s parks department boasts a delightful assortment of entertaining personalities. If you can judge a city by its government employees, then who wouldn’t want to spend a day (if not a lifetime) in the real Pawnee?