Cleveland, Tennessee



The fall is a special time in Cleveland — which is tucked down close to Chattanooga and the Georgia state line. For its in the fall when the Blue Raiders of Cleveland High — who won a state record 54 straight games in the mid-1990s — take to the football field.

It is also the time of year for the MainStreet Cleveland Halloween Block Party, which began as a police candy handout in 1988. Now downtown swells with 20,000 people who fill the streets to listen to live music, to eat from the numerous food stands or participate in the event’s costume contest.

Cleveland is also home to a pair of extremely wealthy men. One is the ever-present Allan Jones, who has worked to provide post-secondary education options for the city’s students. But Jones has also come under national scrutiny from the media for the method in which he amassed his hundreds of millions. His Check Into Cash company is a national pay-day loan organization, oft used by low-wage employees who pay a hefty fee.

The other is Forrest Lee Preston, who is the sole owner of Life Care Centers of America. Preston, whose net worth tops $2 billion, grew up in Massachusetts and went to college in Oregon before settled in Cleveland.

Cleveland — which is ranked 14th in population, but fifth in industry in the state — has experienced at least a double-digit percentage increase in population in 14 straight censuses.

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