Business

Diventures' new 60-foot-pool in North Liberty is heated and ready for scuba divers in training

Classes available for students as young as 10 years old, and swim lessons available for young and old, too

Scuba instructor and retail manager Nate Northup (center) talks to Julie Riechers (right) and her husband Ryan both of L
Scuba instructor and retail manager Nate Northup (center) talks to Julie Riechers (right) and her husband Ryan both of Lamont, Iowa, as they work on their certification requirements after surfacing from a pool session at Diventures, 1895 W. Penn St. in North Liberty, Iowa, on Monday, Dec. 16, 2019. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
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NORTH LIBERTY — Diventures in North Liberty opened a brand-new facility last month not far from Interstate 380, complete with a 60-foot pool and a retail store, and the timing could not be better, say its managers.

“The water and the air temperature in our pool is about 88 degrees consistently, so it’s a really comfortable training environment,” Store Manager Ryan Bruns said.

As the temperatures dip, customers from around the Corridor can visit Diventures to not only dream of warm weather destinations, but also stock up on swim and scuba gear and take lessons to prepare for scuba diving experiences.

“Our biggest focus is safety and fun in the water,” Bruns said.

Diventures opened the new location at the beginning of November.

“We really have a wide spectrum of students,” he said, noting lessons start for participants as young as 10 years old but that 15- to 18-year-olds make up a big portion or its scuba students, as well as 30- to 35-year-olds and those hitting retirement with plans to travel.

Bruns said one option for courses is its “Try Scuba” class — two and a half hours in one day exposing customers to scuba diving and feeling safe and comfortable.

Diventures’ Open Water Diver Certification includes four elements, Bruns said, starting with an online learning component and classroom review with a certified instructor.

“From there we get in the pool and cover all the skills you need while diving, including what happens if you start cramping, or if you get water in your mask,” he said.

The course ends with an open water dive in a local quarry.

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“We also have some people do all the certification stuff here at Diventures and then complete their training on one of our trips” — in Cozumel, for example, Bruns added.

The Diventures team sets up anywhere from 30 to 40 scuba diving adventures each year that are open to the public.

“Our travel department takes care of all the footwork, and we send our own instructors along,” according to Retail Manager Nate Northup.

Another element of the new building is the increase in space for Diventures’ retail component.

“This is three times the size we had before,” Northup said. “We have a lot more room to offer more top-brand swim and scuba gear options with our dedicated retail space.

“Plus we do offer maintenance and service for anything we sell. We can help customers make sure their equipment is working properly.”

General swimming lessons start for as young as 5 months old, up through adults.

“With a ratio of four students to one instructor, it offers a better learning environment with individualized attention,” Bruns said.

Diventures also offers open swim and family swim sessions.

“We are going to start offering dive-in movie nights as well, which we are really looking forward to,” he said.

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Diventures — which also has locations in Omaha, Neb., Springfield, Mo., and Madison, Wisc. — first opened in North Liberty in a different location in 2017 — without a pool.

“We had a storefront right on Highway 965 as the planning and development for this was underway,” Bruns recalled. “We came into the market with the intent to build what we have now.”

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At a glance

• Store manager: Ryan Bruns

• Retail manager: Nate Northup

• Business: Diventures

• Address: 1895 W. Penn St., North Liberty

• Phone: (319) 665-2741

• Website: diventures.com

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