Pizza Ranch Receives Small Business Award
Wednesday, December 15, 2021
Dick and Dianne Kovarna opened Pizza Ranch in March 2013. Dick grew up in northwest Iowa where the first Pizza Ranch was built and went there growing up every Sunday with his family after church. After moving to Hutchinson, Dick and Diane would drive by the old Red Lobster location that sat empty for five years where Dick would express his interest of wanting to open their own Pizza Ranch. They finally started the building process in 2012 and opened in March 2013, where they still hold the record for opening day sales for the franchise.
While many will say it’s the famous broasted chicken that sets Pizza Ranch apart from the rest, Diane would say it’s also their family atmosphere, Christian music, and friendly service. She would also say that working with their employees is one of her favorite parts of owning the business. They have been fortunate to have several employees that have been with them since the start, and they constantly encourage their staff to do their best and make it possible for them to move up in the business. The perfect example of this would be their Assistant General Manager, who started at Pizza Ranch as a dishwasher. They also work closely with Hutchinson High School, TECH, and other organizations who participate in their work training program. With this, students and individuals come twice a week and get to learn firsthand what it is like working in a restaurant. They work with them closely and encourage them to learn about the different positions that are available.
One of the biggest challenges they have faced has been with COVID-19 and learning how to adapt and overcome, but they decided early on they would do what they could to make the best of it. During the shutdown they took that time to remodel their dining room, while continuing to stay open with their drive-thru and delivery options.
Both Dick and Dianne realize the importance of giving back and do it often through their employees, their food, and their support to the community. At Pizza Ranch they love to feed kids and often donate pizza to churches, school events, teachers, and coaches, as well as to special events when they come to town. While schools were closed due to COVID-19, Dick and Dianne stepped-up and offered free pizza through the drive-through each day during lunch. They also partner with several organizations in town including Allen Samuels to feed different groups in the community including First Responders and Law Enforcement.
Thank you Dick and Dianne for all you do for our community.