Parks and Rec

names from the TV show Parks and Recreation
  1. Andy
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Andrew, Greek
    • Meaning:

      "strong and manly"
    • Description:

      Although we prefer Drew to the old Raggedy Andy, Andy has overtaken Drew as a name in its own right. About twice as many baby boys are named Andy, just Andy -- though about eight times as many parents go with the full Andrew.
  2. Ann
    • Origin:

      English variation of Hebrew Hannah
    • Meaning:

      "grace"
    • Description:

      Ann, the name of the sainted mother of the Virgin Mary, was among the top girls’ names for centuries, in both the original English Ann spelling and the French Anne. Both left the Top 100 around 1970 and show no signs of returning, with Anne is the middle of the US Top 1000 and Ann dropped out of sight.
  3. April
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "to open"
    • Description:

      Once the most popular month names, April has been overtaken by June (for girls) and August (for boys), as well as the charmingly old-fashioned May. Literary reference: the heroine of the book and movie Revolutionary Road, and there have been Aprils on Parks and Recreation, Glee, and The Vampire Diaries. Trivia note: comedian Ralphie May named his daughter April June May.
  4. Ben
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "son of"
    • Description:

      Ben, the diminutive of Benjamin or Benedict, can easily stand on its own as a simple, strong, nice-guy choice, though it's somewhat attenuated. Ben is this generation's Bob or Bill.
  5. Brandi
    • Origin:

      Variation of Brandy, Dutch
    • Meaning:

      "burnt wine"
    • Description:

      Only slightly fewer girls are named Brandi each year than Brandy, 45 versus 57 in the US. Both spellings have their advantages and disadvantages.
  6. Chris
    • Origin:

      English nickname for Christian, Christopher
    • Meaning:

      "one who carries Christ"
    • Description:

      Chris is a long-running nickname used almost equally for boys and girls. While past its prime, Chris stands out as sounding completely appropriate for both sexes, perhaps because of its widespread use as a short form of both the popular Christopher and Christine. Chris manages to retain its crisp appeal even though its fashion moment is over.
  7. Dave
    • Origin:

      Short form of David, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "beloved"
    • Description:

      Dave is the ultimate good guy name, but where father name David is still holding onto a spot in the Top 20, Dave -- widely used as an independent name in the middle of the last century -- dropped off the Top 1000 a few decades ago and shows no signs of a comeback. Baby Davids today, often named for dad or grandpa, are more likely to be called David than Dave.
  8. Diane
    • Origin:

      French variation of Diana
    • Meaning:

      "divine"
    • Description:

      Like Joanne and Christine, middle-aged Diane has been overshadowed by the a-ending version of her name. Diane has a definite mid-century feel; it was a Top 20 name from 1946 to 1959. Though it has several distinguished bearers, including Dianes Sawyer, Keaton, von Furstenberg, Lane, Arbus, Kruger and Farr, it is rarely used for babies today.
  9. Donna
    • Origin:

      Italian
    • Meaning:

      "lady"
    • Description:

      Literally meaning "lady" in Italian, Donna was the perfect ladylike housewife mom name on The Donna Reed Show in the fifties and sixties. And there were plenty of namesakes: Donna was in the Top 10 in 1964. These days we'd be more likely to associate it with the emanciatpated clothes of Donna Karen than as a baby name.
  10. Gayle
    • JEAN RALPHIO
      • Jerry
        • Origin:

          Diminutive of Gerald or Jerome, German or Greek
        • Meaning:

          "ruler with the spear or sacred name"
        • Description:

          Jerry is one of those short forms that, like Mike and Debbie, rose to popularity on the coattails of their formal versions. The equivalents today are nickname names like Ellie and Theo.
      • Joan
        • Origin:

          English variation of Johanna
        • Meaning:

          "God is gracious"
        • Description:

          Joan was the perfect name choice for one of the leading characters on Mad Men, being a quintessential girls' name of the period. A Top 10 name in the 30s, a Top 50 name from the 40s through the early 60s, it was the fifth most popular name in the country for three years running and ranks as one of the most common names for girls in the 20th century. But alas, Joan hasn't even appeared in the Top 1000 for a dozen years, and these days it's primarily associated with Joans of the generation of Joan Crawford, Joan Collins and Joan Rivers--just a few of the noted Joans whose ranks also include the singers Joan Sutherland, Joan Baez, Joan Armatrading and Joan Jett. But it's possible that modern parents who are reviving Jane might move on to Joan, inspired by Joan Hollaway Harris.
      • Leslie
        • Origin:

          Scottish
        • Meaning:

          "garden of holly"
        • Description:

          A Scottish place and surname that was once adrogynous but now leans about 20 to 1 toward the girls' side, Leslie has a pleasant, heathery feel that kept it in or near the Top 100 for several decades; the Lesly and Lesley spellings are also frequently used, especially in Britain. While Leslie may not be the freshest name in the bunch, it's become a modern classic and is one of the surprising names always to have ranked among the US Top 1000 for girls.
      • MONA LISA
        • Orin
          • Origin:

            Variation of Oren or Oran
          • Description:

            Orin is one of a variety of similarly-spelled names that have a soft and sensitive image. The Orrin spelling has been known nationally via Republican Senator Hatch.
        • PERD
          • Ron
            • Sebastian
              • Origin:

                Latin from Greek
              • Meaning:

                "person from ancient city of Sebastia"
              • Description:

                Sebastian is an ancient martyr's name turned literary, and Little Mermaid hero—think Sebastian the Crab—that's more popular than ever, as a classic-yet-unconventional compatriot for fellow British favorites T Theodore and Oliver.
            • Shauna
              • Origin:

                Hebrew
              • Meaning:

                "God is gracious"
              • Description:

                More modern options: Shaw, Shay, or even Sean.