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Gwinnett's sister city a YouTube sensation

A screen capture from the Gangnam Style music video on YouTube.

A screen capture from the Gangnam Style music video on YouTube.

LAWRENCEVILLE -- When Gwinnett business and civic leaders began forging a working relationship with an Asian district five years ago, few residents outside the Korean community had heard of the locale.

But now, with more than 160 million YouTube views, Gwinnett's sister city has become a national phenomenon, with kids clamoring to dance "Gangnam Style."

The Korean pop song featuring the name of the wealthy Seoul borough has turned up all over, with singer PSY teaching Britney Spears his famous dance on the Ellen Degeneres Show and making appearances on MTV's Video Music Awards and "Good Morning America."

Nick Masino, the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce vice president who helped build the sister-city partnership, first signed in 2009 and re-signed last year, said his economic development team spotted the video a few weeks ago and have been excited to see the response.

"It's very catchy," said James Song, a Korean immigrant who helped the Gwinnett Chamber with the sister-city agreement. Song is the vice president of the Korean American Chamber of Commerce and serves on the Gwinnett Place Community Improvement District board.He said the video has helped local people who make calls to Korean businesses relate a little bit better.

"I'm glad 'Gangnam Style' came out," he said. "It does really help out with communications. Now, they know what Gangnam is, and that's a good thing."