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'Off the Shelf' raises funds for libraries

August 1, 2013
Weirton Daily Times

CANONSBURG, Pa. - Peacock Keller, a full-service law firm in Washington, Pa., will sponsor its 6th annual "Off the Shelf: Celebration of Books" charity event from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sept. 18 at the Hilton Garden Inn Southpointe.

The fundraiser will feature a presentation by Keith Bellows, National Geographic Traveler editor-in-chief, and supports libraries in Pennsylvania's Washington, Greene and Fayette counties.

Bellows is the senior vice president and editor-in-chief of National Geographic Travel Media and the editor-in-chief of National Geographic Traveler. Traveler is the world's most widely read travel magazine and the category's No. 1 performer on U.S. newsstands.

Under Bellow's stewardship, the magazine has been nominated for two National Magazine Awards, won more than 60 Lowell Thomas Awards for best travel writing and 10 Folio Awards for Best Travel Magazine. In 2011, he was named as the winner of NATJA's inaugural "Spirit of Kalliope Award" for overall achievement in travel journalism.

Prior to joining National Geographic, Bellows launched as its creative director; was the executive producer of; and was founding partner of WestWorld Media. He created and edited more than 30 magazines for Whittle Communications; and has written for Esquire, Sports Illustrated, Parenting and AARP. He also wrote "The Canuck Book" and the 1998 Winter Olympics ACCESS Guide for ABC-TV. His book, "100 Places That Can Change Your Child's Life," was published in February 2013.

Bellows is a graduate of Gordonstoun School in Scotland and Dartmouth College. He lectures extensively around the world and his more than 200 television appearances include the TODAY Show, Good Morning America and a regular segment on National Geographic Today.

This year's "Off The Shelf" theme is travel. Each table at the fundraiser will choose a book about travel and decorate their table accordingly as part of a larger contest. Table decorating will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. the day of the event, with an impartial panel of judges evaluating each table.

Cocktail hour begins at 6 p.m., providing those attending an opportunity to inspect Chinese auction items. Participants also will be able to support their favorite tables by donating to the People's Choice Award. In addition to the Chinese auction, a live auction will be held. Dinner will follow at 7 p.m., with Bellows taking the podium at 8 p.m.

"Each year the attorneys and staff of Peacock Keller look forward to supporting our local libraries through our 'Off The Shelf' celebration," said Doug Nolin, managing partner and master of ceremonies. "We are proud of the success this event has brought for the libraries over the years. We know the benefits the libraries have on our communities and believe it is important to give them our support."

Since the event's inception, Peacock Keller has raised more than $130,000 for the Washington, Greene and Fayette county libraries through "Off The Shelf," with all proceeds going towards the creation and maintenance of a regional one-card network. The one-card network ensures every resident may go to any library in the three-county region while only using one library card, increasing convenience and accessibility for library customers while facilitating cost savings and efficiencies for the library system.

Sponsorship opportunities are available and live and Chinese auction items are being collected. Individual tickets can be purchased for $75 or tables of eight can be purchased for $600. Corporate tables can be purchased for $1,000.

To support literacy or to learn more about the "Off the Shelf" event, contact a local library, call (724) 222-4520 or visit

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