The swank Crystal Tea Room in the Wanamaker Building was filled with Philly sports star power Monday night for the Diamonds and Denim gala, which raised money for the Hamels Foundation.
The event helped Phillies ace Cole Hamels and wife, Heidi, score proceeds for inner city schools and those suffering from HIV in Malawi, a small country in southeast Africa.
“This is taking off,” Hamels said. “What we’re able to get accomplished is great. We’re generating a lot more revenue to give back. In Philadelphia, it’s some of the largest school grants (courtesy of the Hamels Foundation) that have ever been given away.”
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Choosing to help Malawi was an easy choice for the Hamels family.
“Malawi is the most impoverished nation in the world in terms of AIDS or HIV per capita,” Heidi Hamels said. “That’s where we feel that hope needs to be given.”
Those who came to support the cause were able to hang in the same room with a number of Hamels’ teammates, such as Cliff Lee, John Mayberry Jr., Vance Worley and Jimmy Rollins. Chase and Jennifer Utley, and Ryan Howard and his fiancé Krystle Campbell lent their support.
Laynce Nix was arm-in-arm with his wife, Brooke, who is a celebrity of sort. She was once a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader. “It’s great to be out here,” Nix said. “Great cause.”
Speaking of football, Eagles players Todd Herremans and Jon Dorenbos were on hand, along with former Birds quarterback A.J. Feeley. The Flyers’ Scott Hartnell was at the Tea Room after signing a six-year extension.
“It’s good to be out here,” Hartnell said. “It’s a good time with good people.”