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Human Christmas tree and children's chorus light up "Santa's Elves" bash at River Oaks mansion

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News_shelby_Houston_Children's Chorus 2_December 2013
The Houston Children's Chorus provides a holiday welcome at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves fundraiser. Photo by Gary Fountain
News_Shelby_Paige Fertitta_Jason Fertitta_Courtney Hill Fertitta_December 2013
Paige Fertitta, left, with Jason Fertitta and Courtney Hill Ferittta at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves event. Photo by Gary Fountain
88 Greg and Patsy Fourticq, from left, with Diane and John Connally III at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Greg and Patsy Fourticq, left, with Diane and John Connally III at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
117 Dr. Lynda Chin and Dr. Ron DePinho at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Dr. Lynda Chin and Dr. Ron DePinho at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
5 Marshall Maxwell dressed as "Mr. Christmas," performing at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Marshall Maxwell dressed as "Mr. Christmas" performing at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Barbara Aksamit_Dr. Joya Chandra_Steve Roddy
Barbara Aksamit, left, with Dr. Joya Chandra and Steve Roddy at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
19 Eddy and Kelli Blanton at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Eddy and Kelli Blanton at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
63 Emily Boggs, from left, Natalie Griffin, Erin Hangen and Cara Howe at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Emily Boggs, from left, Natalie Griffin, Erin Hangen and Cara Howe at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Claire Cormier Thielke_Sarah Bracewell
Claire Cormier Thielke, left, and Sarah Bracewell at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Steve Chandler_Patti Chandler_ Cathie Mundinger_Dan Mundinger
Steve and Patti Chandler, left, with Cathie and Dan Mundinger at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
77 Bre and Gill Plummer, from left, with Stephanie Young at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Bre and Gill Plummer, from left, with Stephanie Young at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
97 Elizabeth Harrison Cooper, left, and Traci Twardowski at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
Elizabeth Harrison Cooper, left, and Traci Twardowski at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party. Photo by © Gary Fountain
News_shelby_Houston_Children's Chorus 2_December 2013
News_Shelby_Paige Fertitta_Jason Fertitta_Courtney Hill Fertitta_December 2013
88 Greg and Patsy Fourticq, from left, with Diane and John Connally III at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
117 Dr. Lynda Chin and Dr. Ron DePinho at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
5 Marshall Maxwell dressed as "Mr. Christmas," performing at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Barbara Aksamit_Dr. Joya Chandra_Steve Roddy
19 Eddy and Kelli Blanton at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
63 Emily Boggs, from left, Natalie Griffin, Erin Hangen and Cara Howe at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Claire Cormier Thielke_Sarah Bracewell
News_Shelby_MD Anderson Santa's Elves_Steve Chandler_Patti Chandler_ Cathie Mundinger_Dan Mundinger
77 Bre and Gill Plummer, from left, with Stephanie Young at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
97 Elizabeth Harrison Cooper, left, and Traci Twardowski at the M.D. Anderson Santa's Elves party December 2013
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For the eighth consecutive year, the River Oaks home of Paige and Tilman Fertitta was a jingle mingle of Christmas cheer when more than 250 partygoers arrived for the "Santa's Elves" event benefiting M.D. Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital.

While Santa might have been busy at his North Pole workshop, Marshall Maxwell, dressed head-to-toe as a Christmas tree, filled in the ho-ho-ho. He provided his own touch of jolly by playing holiday tunes on the keyboard on the outdoor terrace. Inside, seven real trees created a forest of merry, merry.

Guests were greeted by the Houston Children's Chorus, positioned engagingly along the curving stairway in the foyer. The chorus, directed by Stephen Roddy, does not typically perform at private parties. But because the chorus sang at the Fertitta's wedding and because of the worthy cause, the children add their musical notes to the party each year.

It was all around good cheer for "Santa's Elves" founding chairs Patsy and Greg Fourticq, Gregory Fourticq Jr., Diane and John Connally and Courtney Hill Fertitta and Jason Fertitta. Joining them in welcoming guests was M.D. Anderson president Dr. Ron DePinho.

The merry bunch included Catherine and Reed Barrett, Rosemarie and Matt Johnson, Dr. Linda Chin, Lacey and Matt Goossen, Estela and David Cockrell, Claire Cormier-Thielke and Rick Thielke, John B. Connally IV, Nell Frances Connally, Laura and Andrew McCullough, Amy and Rob Pierce, Sarah and Bradley Bracewell and Eleanor and Dan Gilbane.

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