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Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC's 125th anniversary bash raises stunning $11.9 million

| Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015, 9:00 p.m.
Denise Pampena, Joe Manganiello and Ramsey Lyons during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Mike Mancini | For Trib Total Media
Denise Pampena, Joe Manganiello and Ramsey Lyons during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Greg Barrett and Kelly Gates during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Greg Barrett and Kelly Gates during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Hoddy and Mary Anne Hanna with Sy Holzer during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Hoddy and Mary Anne Hanna with Sy Holzer during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Candice Mauad during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Candice Mauad during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Christina and Rob Cochran during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Christina and Rob Cochran during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Theodora and Troy Polamalu during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, Oct. 2, 2015.
Mike Mancini | For Trib Total Media
Theodora and Troy Polamalu during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, Oct. 2, 2015.
Brent Winston during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Brent Winston during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Chris and Jane Gessner during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Chris and Jane Gessner during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Alex Rangos during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Alex Rangos during Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015.

Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation 125th Anniversary Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Friday, October 2, 2015. Mike Mancini | for the Tribune-Review

“True Blood” and “Magic Mike” star Joe Manganiello might be well known for his body of work, but Oct. 2, the Mt. Lebanon native managed to endear himself even more to 900 guests of the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC's 125th Anniversary celebration.

“It's become my charity of choice. It's important to let people in my hometown know that I've never left in many ways,” Manganiello said. “I love kids, and it just so happened my career got to the place where I could help.”

Presented by the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation and two years in the making, the soiree unveiled itself in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Inside, Joe Mineo of Something New Events had transformed the cavernous Downtown space into a steampunk-infused paradise. From there, West Coast Music set the stage with 26 musicians and performers who ensured a ballroom replete with empty seats.

“You know it's a good party when you can't get them to sit down,” Sy Holzer said.

But for the stars that were in so many eyes, the ultimate jaw-dropper came when it was announced that the gala had raised $11.9 million.

“One hundred and twenty-five years ago, there was one cot dedicated to a child in one hospital. Now we have 315 beds, a million outpatient visits, and 25,000 surgeries. That needs to be attributed to the great support we've gotten from the people of Pittsburgh and the surrounding communities,” said CHP prez Chris Gessner (with Jane).

Spied were co-chairs Ramsey Lyons and Denise Pampena, Foundation prez Greg Barrett andKelly Gates, Mario Lemieux, Troy and Theodora Polamalu, WWE's Stephanie McMahon and her mom, Linda, Hoddy andMary Anne Hanna, Suzy andJeff Broadhurst, Rob andChristina Cochran, AlexanderRangos (accepting the Legacy of Hope Award on behalf of his father, John G. Rangos Sr.) and Deb Wheeler.

Kate Benz is the society columnist for Trib Total Media and can be reached at kbenz@tribweb.com, 412-380-8515 or via Twitter @KateBenzTRIB.

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