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Nolan Ryan, Wade Phillips & Matt Schaub among 40 sports celebs at Tilman Fertitta's "Gathering of Champions"

Nolan Ryan, Wade Phillips & Matt Schaub among 40 sports celebs at Tilman Fertitta's "Gathering of Champions"

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Tilman Fertitta , Jeff Hildebrand , Brian Becker , Rich Handler Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Calvin Murphy , Moses Malone , Joe Washington Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Brian Ching , Paige Fertitta Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Earl Campbell , Nolan Ryan , Ruth Ryan Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Joy Willard , Brian Vickers Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Britny Greensage , J.J. Watt Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Steve Tyrell , Dancie Ware , Jim Ware Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Wade Phillips Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Christine Falgout , Gregg Falgout , Jo Lynn Falgout Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Larry Dierker , Judy Dierker , Gene Cernan , Jennifer Sambito , Joe Sambito Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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Luis Scola , J.T. Hildebrand Photo by © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
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News_021_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Calvin Murphy_Moses Malone_Joe Washington.jpg
News_020_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Brian Ching_Paige Fertitta.jpg
News_003_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Earl Campbell_Nolan Ryan_Ruth Ryan.jpg
News_019_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Joy Willard_Brian Vickers.jpg
News_018_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Britny Greensage_J.J. Watt.jpg
News_017_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Steve Tyrell_Dancie Ware_Jim Ware.jpg
News_011_Houston Children's Charity_Gathering of Champions_May 2012_Wade Phillips.jpg
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Nothing like schmoozing with 40 or so headliner athletes, both active and legendary. And that's the allure each spring when Paige and Tilman Fertitta open their River Oaks spread for Houston Children's Charity's Gathering of Champions.

On this night that raised $130,000 for the non-profit, the Fertitta's vast pool area (think resort hotel) was populated with a cadre of sports names familiar to just about every Houstonian. Craig Biggio worked the crowd as did Nolan Ryan, Matt Schaub, Luis Scola, J.J. Watt, Ray Childress and Brian Ching.

Houston sports fans had their photo opps with Earl Campbell, Dan Pastorini, Moses Malone, Elvin Hayes, Calvin Murphy, Joe Sambito and more. Add to the celebrity mix NASA astronauts Mark Kelly and Scott Kelly, songman Steve Tyrell and astronaut Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon. It was celebrity city on this balmy spring night.

Guests grazed across the field of food stations representing various eateries in Fertitta's Landy's empire and swayed to the tunes of Tyrell and Phat Strad, the original all-girl rock string quartet.

Grooving to this sporting scene were emcee Channel 13 KTRK news anchor Dave Ward, Houston Children's Charity exec Laura Ward, Laura and John Johnson, John Havens, Jeff Hildebrand, Janice and Tad Brown, Perri and Dan D'Armond, Jeni and David Burg, Edna Meyer Nelson and Suzanne Klein.