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Sister City

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Also, remember everyone. Venezuela is a poor country. These men are not used to the wealth and flash that we have here in central Indiana.
Leslie Knope

"Sister City" is the fifth episode of season 2 of the NBC television series Parks and Recreation. It originally aired on October 15, 2009 to 4.69 million viewers.

The episode was written by Alan Yang and directed by series co-creator Michael Schur. It featured Saturday Night Live performer Fred Armisen in a guest appearance as Raul, the head of the Venezuelan delegation. According to Nielsen Ratings, the episode was seen by 4.97 million households, a drop from the previous week. The episode received generally positive reviews.

Storyline Edit

Leslie and the Pawnee Parks and Recreation Department prepares for a visit by park department officials from Boraqua, Pawnee's sister city in Venezuela. Leslie warns her co-workers the Venezuelan government officials will likely be poor, simple people. Later, the Venezuelan delegation arrives, headed by their parks department vice director Raul Alejandro Bastilla Pedro de Veloso de Maldonado, along with Antonio Rivera-Fonseca and Elvis Correja. There are cultural clashes right away, like when they mistake Tom for a servant and order him to get their bags. They also mistakenly believe they can choose any woman to have sex with; they all favor Donna. Raul and the Venezuelans act condescending during a meet-and-greet party, making offensive remarks about Pawnee and mocking the gifts Leslie gives them. They continue to give orders to Tom, who follows along because they give him large cash tips. Raul and Leslie exchange gifts during a public forum.

The Venezuelan intern Jhonny Qujada falls in love with April, who convinces him she is feared and very powerful. Meanwhile, Leslie tells the Venezuelans that she is seeking to raise $35,000 to fill in a pit to make a park. Raul and his colleagues start to laugh, telling her they have so much money from oil, they can build whatever they want. Leslie, who is growing increasingly annoyed with the Venezuelans, decides to take them to Pawnee's nicest park, Harvey James Park, with hopes of impressing them. Instead, they are disgusted, and Raul mistakes the park for the aforementioned pit. Leslie later takes them to a public meeting to show them democracy in action, but all she is able to demonstrate is angry citizens throwing insults and angry gestures at her. An unimpressed Raul wonders where are the armed guards to take the protesters to jail. When Raul tells Leslie they live like kings in Venezuela and answer to nobody, she explodes in anger, insulting their uniforms and Hugo Chávez. The Venezuelans storm out.

Leslie calls a meeting and apologizes to Raul, who in turn apologizes as well and offers Leslie a check for $35,000 to fill in the pit. Leslie fears it may be "dirty money", but accepts. During a photo opportunity later, Raul's team bring out a video camera to document Leslie saying "Viva Venezuela" and "Viva Chávez". Against her wishes, Leslie reluctantly does so. When Raul starts speaking Spanish to the camera, Leslie asks April to translate, and learns Raul is discussing his "Committee to Humiliate and Shame America". A furious Leslie tears up the $35,000 check and shouts "Viva America", prompting Raul to declare Pawnee is no longer their sister city and storm out. Leslie insists she will raise the money to build the park without them and Tom, inspired by her example, secretly puts all the tip money he made from the Venezuelans into the park donation jar. The episode ends with Leslie and Tom later receiving an online video from April, who tells them she and Donna are vacationing with Jhonny in his Venezuelan palace, which is watched over by armed guards.


Guest StarsEdit

  • Fred Armisen as Raul.
  • Federico Dordei as Elvis.


  • Jim O'Heir as Jerry Gergich.
  • Retta as Donna Meagle.
  • Loudon Wainwright as Barry.
  • JC Gonzalez as Jhonny.
  • Carlos Carrasco as Antonio.
  • Mel Cowan as red-faced man. (later named Mel)
  • Karen Teliha as weird woman.
  • Bonnie Hellman as woman in red.
  • Eric Edelstein as Lawrence.


Leslie: Also, remember everyone. Venezuela is a poor country. These men are not used to the wealth and flash that we have here in central Indiana.

Leslie: Look, I know these guys didn't turn out to be exactly how we thought they would be.
Tom: You said they might not know what toilet paper is.

Raul: We get 14,000 channels. Fourteen thousand. I already know who wins Project Runway.
Leslie: Wow, I'm coming over to your house then.
Raul: I see what you're getting at, but no thank you. I am still primarily interested in the large, black woman.

Leslie: We'll take them to Chicago and pretend it's part of Pawnee. Or New York. Or London! No, wait, the money's different there. They'll figure it out. OK, nevermind. We'll go to the park.

Raul: This is outrageous. Where are the armed men who come in to take the protestors away? Where are they? This kind of behavior is never tolerated in Baraqua. You shout like that they put you in jail. Right away. No trial, no nothing. Journalists, we have a special jail for journalists. You are stealing: right to jail. You are playing music too loud: right to jail, right away. Driving too fast: jail. Slow: jail. You are charging too high prices for sweaters, glasses: you right to jail. You undercook fish? Believe it or not, jail. You overcook chicken, also jail. Undercook, overcook. You make an appointment with the dentist and you don't show up, believe it or not, jail, right away. We have the best patients in the world because of jail.

April: My mom's Puerto Rican. That's why I'm so lively and colorful.

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