Firefighters issue call for gifts

Donations down this year, but organizers hopeful more will come in

Yukon firefighters Mike Pinkerton, Fabian Gallegos and Jake Neuenschwander show off some of the gifts that are part of Santa’s Toy Shop, which is an annual toy drive to benefit needy children and teens. (Photo by Mindy Ragan Wood) 

By Mindy Ragan Wood, Staff Writer – Needy children this year will have a good Christmas thanks to area toy drives including Santa’s Toy Shop sponsored by the Yukon Fire Department.

Every year firefighters issue a call to the community to donate new, unwrapped toys for young children and teenagers who would otherwise go without on Christmas morning.
Captain Brad Homme said the department has participated for at least the last 14 years and they look forward to it each yuletide season.

“Obviously everyone up here loves to help and that’s why we’re here. I’ve always loved Christmas since I was a kid, but being able to help the less fortunate is better than getting gifts,” he said.

The lobby has several gifts under a tall Christmas tree next to a couple of bicycles.

“It seems like donations are down a little, but I’m sure they’ll pick up,” he said. “A lot of people pick either a boy or a girl and a lot of them shop for younger children it seems like. There are a lot of older children who participate. We do need more gifts for teens. Gift cards are always a good idea and socks, hats, a coat, gloves,” Homme said.

Parents in need fill out applications for their children which allows them to “shop” for unwrapped gifts at a central location. There is no wish list, but simply the opportunity to look for presents.

“They’re usually allowed to get a big gift and a small gift, usually up to five or so. It depends on how many gifts we get in,” Homme explained, “and depending on how many people are in need.”

Gifts can be dropped off at the Yukon Fire Department’s Station One, E. Main Street and Yukon Parkway.