ROCK VALLEY, IOWA (KCAU) – Basketball has given a lot to Keith Ranschau. Since the end of his playing days at Rock Valley and Northwestern College, Keith has searched for ways to reciprocate those experiences and relationships he gleaned from the game. Later seeing that same fire for the sport in his twin daughters Hudsyn and Haevyn.
So when their season was halted due to the COVID-19 shutdown in 2020, Keith saw an opportunity. Envisioning a new space for them to train.
“It started to occur to me like ‘oh okay so maybe this is what I’m supposed to do to finally give back to the game, years later, of what gave me so much,” The Ranschau Gym owner Keith Ranschau said.
Keith and his wife broke ground on that vision in Rock Valley in the Spring of 2020, ready for use by the Fall. Featuring a full-length court, six hoops, a locker room, and multiple spaces for spectators, “The Ranschau Gym” became a spectacle within its quiet setting.
“We wanted to create a space that was warm and welcoming, because I knew my girls were going to spend a lot of time in there,” Ranschau said. “Not only just a nice space to be at, but also a very functional space.”
Putting the facility to fuller use, Keith reached out to professional skills trainer Shane Hennen to work with his girls. A gym so unique, Shane almost didn’t believe it.
“He sent me a picture of the gym and I thought it was fake,” professional skills trainer Shane Hennen said. “I was like there is no way this can be real. Then you walk in and you’re like ‘oh my goodness’. It’s just one of those places that you don’t want to leave.”
And word spread quickly. Becoming home to skills camps and scrimmages, The Ranschau Gym would soon attract some of the top talent in Northwest Iowa like Central Lyon’s Addison Klosterbuer, Sibley-Ocheyedan’s Bria Wasmund, and Sioux City East’s Trishelle Miller. Cultivating high levels of competition among the cornfields.
“There’s girls from Sioux City that come down here and we all get to play against each other and we’re very competitive so we get to show our talents off to one another,” South Dakota basketball commit Addison Klosterbuer said. “This is definitely one of the best gyms I’ve been in and seen and I’ve been to a lot of gyms.”
“It’s really exciting because there’s great competition here and I know that every time I come, I’ll be getting better,” Dakota State commit Bria Wasmund said.
The gym turned into a home away from home for many, with some coming back once or twice per week. Staying true to Keith’s mission, it remains free for anyone to use.
“What this game gave me was priceless. I think we’re going on three years of its existence, and so far it’s been worth every penny,” Ranschau said.
“It’s just a perfect storm of unbelievable facilities, great atmosphere, great players and then great training,” Sioux City East girls basketball head coach Brian Drent said. “It’s just a great combination for everybody.”
A court with character in a state-of-the-art space. Holding onto the goal of giving opportunities, and memories, to basketball players of all ages.
“This is one of one. This is middle of Iowa, middle of the cornfields, you can see it all through the windows. It’s just a special vibe here,” Hennen said.
“Just be able to use the game of basketball in the same way that I used it to develop some very important life skills and relationships that will last you a lifetime,” Ranschau said.