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Published May 15, 2012

On Offerman
Getting to Know the Man Behind Ron Swanson

Nick Offerman
You probably already know something about Nick Offerman. Illinois native. Plays laconic meat-lover Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation. Owner of the second-greatest mustache ever displayed in prime time. (But watch your back, Selleck.) As he prepares to perform his one-man show American Ham next month, we wanted to give you some other important data on the man—and the ’stache.

He’s from a small town in Illinois called Minooka. Don’t mistake it for Pawnee. “Pawnee would be more like a Joliet,” he says.

He has a BFA from the University of Illinois.

Don’t arrive late for his new show: it features minor nudity right at the top. “Yeah, it really packs ’em in.”

It also features anecdotes, woodworking tips and songs. But it’s not stand-up comedy. “I consider myself more of a humorist.”

He lived in Rogers Park in the mid-’90s. He knew Amy Poehler. But he had never seen an improv show until his mid-30s.

His key to a good mustache: “Rub a dollop of animal fat into your whiskers. Then comb. Repeat.”

He sells furniture and mustache combs on his woodworking website. The mustache comb is his best seller.

He can also build you a canoe.

The one place he’d take Ron Swanson for a night on the town in Chicago: Gibsons.

Where he’d take himself: Moody’s Pub for a cheeseburger. “It has a great courtyard. It feels halfway to Middle Earth.”

He makes it back to Minooka a couple times a year. “My family still treats me like the jackass I am.”

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