By Starrla Cray
DELANO, MN On any given winter afternoon at the Keranen household in Delano, Amy and Randy’s five children can most likely be found practicing their hockey skills at a skating rink near their home.
“They love the winter, because they get to skate,” Amy said.
All five of the Keranen children are involved in the Crow River Youth Hockey Association, and Amy is the group’s treasurer.
“It started with my son Daniel,” Amy said. “He just loves to skate.”
Daniel, 13, is a seventh grader at Delano Middle School. His younger siblings, Johnny, 11, Anna, 8, and Jack, 6, soon became interested in hockey, as well.
Amanda, 14, had played basketball in years past, but is planning to be on the hockey team next year.
“She’s been skating a lot outside with her brothers,” Amy said.
Amy and her husband, Randy, don’t play hockey, but they definitely enjoy watching.
“We’re both good cheerleaders,” Amy said.
Randy and Amy often take photographs of their children at games.
“We both take a lot of pictures,” Amy said. She enjoys making memory books, scrapbooks, and posters of her children playing sports, while Randy does more of the photography work.
“That’s kind of a passion for him,” Amy said.
Most of the photography that Randy and Amy do is action shots of their children.
“Right now, it pretty much revolves around our kids,” Amy said, adding that someday, they might consider making photography a side business.
“I’ve always been into pictures,” she said.
The memory books definitely have their share of hockey photos, but the Keranen children are involved in other sports, as well, including baseball, soccer, lacrosse, and football.
“Daniel’s going to try track and field, since he’s in seventh grade this year,” Amy said.
The Keranens live within walking distance of Delano Public Schools, which is convenient for going to practices, Amy said.
“Otherwise, I don’t know if we could do as much,” she said.
The children play hockey in the winter, and occasionally play on informal leagues in the fall or spring.
Amy, who grew up in Dassel, said she was more of a gymnast and diver in high school. She was one of seven children in her family.
Randy, who grew up in the Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, was one of 17 children.
The couple met through a youth gathering of sister churches, Amy said. Randy’s uncle was a pastor at Apostolic Lutheran Church in Dassel, where Amy’s family attended.
For about 10 months after they got married, the Keranens lived in Green Bay, WI. They then moved to Maple Grove.
“Maple Grove was too big of a city for us,” Amy said, so about 11 years ago, the family came to Delano.
“We really love living here,” she said. “The people have been awesome.”
Amy wanted to be close to Dassel, and Randy needed to be able to commute to his job in Minneapolis.
“Delano was a good compromise,” Amy said.
Randy, who is a controls engineer for Industrial Electric, also teaches a class in St. Michael. The class is for electricians who want to learn more about the controls aspect of their profession.
Every year, Randy and his sons look forward to camping with their cousins in the Boundary Waters.
Daniel also got to go deer hunting with Randy for the first time this year, and he got an eight-pointer, Amy said.
Time goes fast at the Keranen residence, because there’s always some type of fun activity going on, Amy said.
“It’s busy, but it’s a good busy,” she said.