When Becky Hook was 14 years old she received a quilt as a Christmas gift from her great-grandmother, who passed away before the year was out.

When Becky Hook was 14 years old she received a quilt as a Christmas gift from her great-grandmother, who passed away before the year was out.

Teenagers aren't famous for taking care of things, and it was not until Becky Hook began having children of her own that she realized how precious the possessions that are handed down from one generation to another can be. By then, the quilt was no longer a quilt at all, just a few scraps of tattered cloth.

Hook took what remained and fashioned a Christmas tree ornament. This became the first decoration for what Hook now calls a "Memory Tree," which is festooned with ornaments from four generations of not only Becky Hook's family but also that of husband Dave Hook.

"As we're losing grandparents and their stories, like Hallmark cards there are memories to these ornaments," Becky Hook said.

That special tree with its special ornaments will be among the delights on display in the Hook home, 3219 Columbus St., for those taking the annual Christmas Home Tour on Saturday, Dec. 6, from 4 to 8 p.m.

Proceeds of the tour benefit the Grove City Emergency Fund and the Food Bank. Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for senior citizens age 55 and older. They may be purchased at all seven locations on the tour or at the Sommer House Gallery, 4038 Broadway, the week before.

Memories of another sort inspired a much-beloved Christmas movie, which in turn inspired Andrea and Jon Kochensparger to transform one of the rooms in the house at 4283 Haughn Road into scenes from the film.

The air rifle Ralphie so wanted, the ridiculous pink bunny suit, the Lifebuoy soap with which his mouth was washed out and, of course, the "Old Man's Major Award" of the possibly Italian leg lamp will be on display as the couple offers a sort of homage to "A Christmas Story."

The 1983 film starring Peter Billingsley, Darren McGavin and Melinda Dillon was narrated by Jean Shepherd, a famous New York City disc jockey whose book of autobiographical stories about growing up in 1940s Indiana formed the basis for a movie. A modest success when it came out, "A Christmas Story" has become as much a holiday favorite as the more-established versions of "A Christmas Carol," "Miracle on 34th Street" and Frank Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life."

"We have it (the movie) on every year at Christmas," Andrea Kochen- sparger said. "It's kind of become part of our Christmas. It just makes me laugh every year."

"There's a lot of people very loyal to the movie," her husband offered.

eBay helped save the day in terms of providing sufficient memorabilia of that era for the room the Kochenspargers are creating, although her brother's old Tonka trucks were still on hand and the Red Ryder BB-gun was found at a local sporting goods store.

The Hook family's Memory Tree includes even some broken ornaments that remind them of the time the cat climbed the tree and knocked it over, and similar now fond recollections of Christmas mishaps past.

One ornament, a silver bell, is dear to Becky Hook's heart.

"That's a memory for me, because that was my mom's favorite Christmas carol," she said. "It's not necessarily old memories. It's a lot of new memories, too.

"Every ornament you put up, there's always a story with it."

Other stops on the Dec. 4 tour include 2787 Annabelle Court, the home of Mark and Jayne Mayers; 3818 Mayfair Drive, the home of Ron and Anne Dolch; 4770 Hoover Road, the Grove City Church of the Nazarene; 4185 Orders Road, Century Village in Fryer Park; and 5857 Goldstone Court, the home of Bill and Wanda Burkey.

Brenda Hritz, who has been organizing the Christmas Home Tour to benefit the Grove City Food Bank and Emergency Fund since 2001, is grateful to those who participate in opening their homes or buildings for the event.

"If it wasn't for them, we certainly couldn't do it," she said. "After we've had the tour, they tell me how much fun it was."

With a troubled economy, Hritz added that the amount she's able to donate to local charitable efforts as a result of the tour is probably needed even more than in years past.

"I imagine things are worse this year than normal," she said. "They probably need things more than usual."