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City Profile: Collegedale
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Sunday, March 27, 2011    |   
Collegedale is home to Little Debbie snack cakes and Southern Adventist University.
Collegedale is home to Little Debbie snack cakes and Southern Adventist University.
Photo by John Rawlston /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

* Population: 6,514.

* Geographic area: Located in Hamilton County’s southeastern quadrant, Collegedale comprises about eight square miles, all of it land.

* Date founded: 1968.

* Landmarks or geographic features: Directly adjacent to the Enterprise South industrial complex, a manufacturing mecca with inhabitants such as Volkswagen and (in the future) Amazon.

* Median income: $42,270.

* Unique characteristics: Home to McKee Foods, which produces Little Debbie snack cakes. It’s one of Hamilton County’s largest employers.

* Most famous residents: O.D. McKee, one of several key people who decided to move the family business from Charlotte, N.C., to Collegedale.

* History: Southern Adventist University, then a junior college, was the impetus for Collegedale. The city was incorporated in 1968.

* Unique traditions: Last May, McKee Foods celebrated the 50th year of using the Little Debbie name. A 75-pound Oatmeal Creme Pie — a table-length dessert — was sliced and devoured in celebration.

* Schools: A.W. Spalding Elementary School, Collegedale Academy, Southern Adventist University.

* Best-kept secret: Southern Adventist University’s gymnastics team, which occasionally fills intermissions at various sporting events, such as UTC basketball games.

* Fun fact: There are 160 Little Debbie varieties.