This article contains spoilers for the Parks and Recreation show. Continue at your own risk.
"The Cones of Dunshire" is the ninth episode of season 6 of the NBC television series Parks and Recreation, and the 99th episode overall. It premiered on November 21, 2013 and had 2.81 million viewers.
During his time off between jobs, Ben Wyatt creates a board game called The Cones of Dunshire. He presents the beta to Leslie Knope, who is not a fan and insists he keep to his day job. The next day, Leslie sets out to ensure that her final duty as a city councilwoman is to guarantee the longevity of her No. 1 project, the Pawnee Commons. Currently, the money set aside for the Pawnee Commons is in a discretionary fund and Leslie would like to move the money to a lock box to ensure that it is used for that project. In typical Jeremy Jamm fashion, he moves to table any decision on the money until Leslie is officially gone from office. Leslie is determined not to go out on a losing note, so she confronts Jamm at his house and informs him she is not leaving until she gets his vote. Jamm agrees to have her and Chris Traeger stay the night, with the goal being to begin negotiations the next morning. However, Jamm plays hard ball all day and Leslie is forced to change venues to appease to Jamm's liking of karaoke. After a successful karaoke session, Jamm gives her his word and puts it in writing, noting that no one can touch the money for one year – this does not bode well for Leslie as she wants to be able to use the money immediately.
Leslie later reveals to Chris that her quest to break ground on Lot 48 and begin construction on the park was an attempt to get Ann Perkins to stay in Pawnee and not move to Michigan. Chris then reveals to Leslie that Ann's current absence from Pawnee was due to her signing a lease on their new home in Ann Arbor. Chris offers to help Leslie change Jamm's mind by offering him IOUs as City Manager in exchange for a secure lock box that Leslie can access immediately. Unbeknownst to Jamm, Chris is actually departing Pawnee soon and Jamm is being deceived. With Chris stepping down as City Manager, he offers Ben the job. This forces Ben to have to quit (once again) from his accounting job at Barney Varmn's accounting firm, but leaves his accounting friends with The Cones of Dunshire, as he knows they will truly appreciate it.
Meanwhile, Ron Swanson decides it is time to sell one of his best-loved cabins in the woods, and enlists Donna Meagle and Tom Haverford to assist him as realtors. He is immediately not impressed with Donna and Tom sprucing up his cabin, and he is even more unimpressed with the types of people looking to buy it. After hearing one bidder wishes to buy the property purely for the land, he orders everyone out and announces no bids will be accepted at this time. Back at the Parks office, Ron informs Donna and Tom he does not care about the money; what he wants is for someone to respect what it meant to him: a quiet refuge from the nonsense of modern life. As neither Donna or Tom can find someone like that, April Ludgate offers to buy it so she and Andy Dwyer can use it for their simple purposes. She offers Ron everything in her purse; he acknowledges how this is the best offer he's had yet and agrees to release the estate into April's willing hands.
Ben: [covering Leslie's eyes] Are you ready?
Ben: No, babe. Are you ready?
Ben: [uncovers Leslie's eyes] Presenting the Cones of Dunshire! A brand new gaming experience. [Leslie doesn't look impressed] 8-12 players, 2 wizards, a maverick, [in a dramatic low voice] the arbiter, [normal voice] 2 warriors, a corporal, and a ledgerman. Now, the ledgerman just keeps score and he wears this hat. [picks up a sea captain's hat]
Leslie: Oh, boy.
Ben: Now the object is to accumulate Cones. Or Cones Wins. But, in order to get a Cone, you have to build a civilization. The other amazing thing is the Challenge Play.
Ben: The thing about the Challenge Play is it is basically the game... in reverse.
Ben: Are the Cones a metaphor? Well, yes and no.
Ben: Oh my God! The maverick should be able to trade lumber for agricultural credits. How have I not thought of this before??
[Leslie stares at Ben at the pointlessness of the game]
Ben: [realizing] This is nothing, right?
Leslie: Um, when do you go back to work again?
Ben: Tomorrow. It's fine - I'll just throw this in the garbage.