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.