Next week, Roop Brothers' Bar on North Union Street will look more like a toy store than a place to enjoy a brew with friends after work.

Next week, Roop Brothers' Bar on North Union Street will look more like a toy store than a place to enjoy a brew with friends after work.

For the fourth year, Al Roop is organizing a Toy Drop-Off in the lot behind his bar, where local firefighters will help him collect toys for the 52nd annual Holiday Clearing House sponsored by People in Need (PIN).

The drive-through collection will be in the city lot next to the BP Station off William Street from noon to 5 p.m. on Dec. 5.

Needed are new, unwrapped toys for younger children, or cash and checks which will be used to purchase gift cards for older children, he said. The driver of each car that drops off toys or money will be entered in a drawing to win a 42-inch flat panel LCD TV donated by Wal-Mart. The drawing will be held at 5:30 p.m. and the winner does not need to be present.

Roop said he organized the event to help PIN and honor his late grandfather, Capt. William Roop, who served as a Columbus firefighter.

"I got a fire truck from my grandfather when I was a kid and nothing would make me happier than to see a big, red fire truck in the toy collection," Roop said.

"All kids need a toy and this is my way of making that happen," he said.

Last year's toy drive brought in nearly 800 toys and $1,700 in cash.

PIN is serving 497 families this year with more than 1,000 children, he said, as well as helping 135 households in which a resident is housebound, Roop said.

"It is up to the community to help them make Christmas brighter for these people," Roop said.

On the same day as the toy drive, PIN is holding a food drive from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Delaware County Fairgrounds, said PIN spokesperson Dorothy Spain.

The 2009 Holiday Clearing House will begin on Dec. 7 and end Dec. 13. On the final day, families are invited in to choose toys for the children.

PIN is a family service agency that organizes assistance to Delaware County residents. Each August, it begins registering individuals and families who otherwise wouldn't be able to provide their own holiday gifts.

Thanks to collection drives and donations from area individuals, businesses, churches and other entities, the Holiday Clearing House each year provides gifts, gift cards and other goods to those in need. In recent years, the collection has steadily grown, as have local needs.

The clearing house has grown substantially in the past decade. When Kevin Crowley started with PIN in 1997 as executive director, it helped serve 278 families.

Crowley was away for the Thanksgiving holiday and unavailable for comment, but last year he said, "Many civic organizations, schools, businesses and the like have some component in their own structure for giving back. To pull this off, it takes a lot of people coming together. The clearing house and the need grow annually."

Crowley was amazed at the success of last year's toy drive at Roop's and said it was indicative of the way the Delaware community pulls together to help its own.

"When you get a guy like Al or someone else in the community that puts something of this magnitude together, I can tell you, it makes a huge impact on people who might otherwise not have a merry Christmas," he told ThisWeek last year. "It's the community that makes that happen."

Volunteers are still needed for this year's Holiday Clearing House.

For additional information, call PIN at (740) 363-6284 or the Holiday Clearing House line at (740) 363-6528 beginning Dec. 5.

-- ThisWeek staff writer Nate Ellis contributed to this story.