Today On — Forgotten Spaces, Korean Booze And Video Game Music

Sep 22, 2013

Some great local and national stories you may have missed on

Beyond The Borscht Belt: Life After The Catskills' Heyday of Hotels — Sullivan County, N.Y., in the Catskills Mountains, used to be a mecca for tourism — the area was colloquially known as the Borscht Belt because of the large number of Jewish vacationers who frequented the area. Now, many stand deserted and derelict — playgrounds for graffiti artists, copper wire scavengers and photographers like Bob Skinner who are fascinated by forgotten spaces.

Grand Theft Auto's Music Sets The Tone — The latest entrant into the Grand Theft Auto video game franchise dropped last week, raking in $800 million in sales in just its first day. The GTA series has become a shorthand for all the putative social ills associated with video games, but the music is clearly curated by people who are deeply familiar with the various genres that play on the fictional radio stations that blare out of the games' many stolen cars.

Chemicals Industry Makes Baton Rouge No. 1 Most Export-Intensive Metro — In his 2010 State of the Union Address, President Obama launched the National Export Initiative. As the country was emerging from the Great Recession, the President said he wanted the U.S. to double exports by 2014. Only four of the top 100 metro areas in the country are on track to meet that goal. Baton Rouge is one. New Orleans is another. That's according to the Brookings Institution's latest "Export Nation" report, which was released last week.

Move Over Vodka; Korean Soju's Taking A Shot At America — Every year, the trade magazine Drinks International puts out a list of the top-selling alcohols in the world, and in the category of spirits, there is one brand that more than doubles the sales of its closest competitor every year. That top-seller is South Korea's Jinro soju, a clear spirit traditionally made of rice.