As of July 1, gone were the days of $1 Canyon Pizza slices.
Patrons now need some extra change or the nerve to beg bystanders for quarters since the price of a slice jumped to $1.50.
Late-night pizza has become a Penn State tradition, but with the prices of dairy foods rising nationwide, the convenience of a $1 slice is no longer feasible for eateries that want to stay in business.
"When we started the dollar slices, cheese was 94 cents a pound," said Matt Floravit, Canyon's store manager. "Now, it's $4 a pound."
Floravit said that along with inevitable inflation, the high cost of dairy has left Canyon no choice but to charge a little extra.
"At first I didn't think it was a good idea at all," Floravit said. "I thought maybe we should have just served smaller slices that would still cost $1 but save us money, too. But this seems to be working better than we first thought."
Some students, like Ashley Grim, said a few extra quarters were worth the weekend staple.
"I understand why they have to raise the prices because of the recent rise in cost of ingredients," Grim (freshman-business) said. "Fifty cents is not gonna keep me from coming back."
Alex Hauser (freshman-information science and technology) said he agreed, saying he "plans on going back, no matter what the price."
Floravit admits, though, that he's expecting an adjustment period, especially with the students returning in the fall.
Some students expressed concerned at having to carry change with them if they wanted to buy a slice of pizza.
"I'm a little offended; we are loyal customers" Hannah Morris (sophomore-advertising and public relation) said. "[Canyon] might as well make it $2 so that we don't have to mess around with quarters."
Stephanie Nestlerode (sophomore-rehabilitative science) said she couldn't believe that $4 more per pie was necessary.
"I think that's kind of dumb," she said. "I mean, what does 50 cents do, pay for another piece of cheese?"
Others said the original price of $1 was too much, anyway.
"It's still the most disgusting pizza in the world," said Steve Kirsch (sophomore-information science and technology). "Maybe if they paid me $1.50 I would eat it."
A tally taken by employee Lori Kucowski the first night of the new price showed that the higher prices will take some getting used to.
"I kept track of everyone who walked in, and of those people, about a third of them left when they saw the new price, a third got angry but still ended up buying a piece and the other third just seemed to understand," Kucowski said.
Kucowski agreed that the increased price will anger people this fall and will be a shock to students returning for the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts this weekend.
"People need to understand that this isn't a magical land of dollar slices of pizza," she said, laughing. "We're not being greedy. This is reality, and we're a real business."
Economic realities aside, the idea of the traditional dollar slices of Canyon Pizza disappearing still may take time to set in with students.
"It's a little ridiculous," Lee Citarella (senior-psychology and crime, law and justice) said.
William Henning, professor emeritus of animal and food science, said the dairy market is part of a chain of rising costs, a main component of which is governmental subsidizing.
"The government is subsidizing ethanol producers $1.56 per bushel of corn, causing the price of corn to go from about $2.75 per bushel to over $4 per bushel," Henning said.
The government is subsidizing ethanol production to try and parlay its use into replacing gasoline consumption.
"Since corn is the major feed cost of raising most livestock, that increases the cost of dairy produced significantly," Henning said.
-- William Colsher, Matt Sczweck and Collegian staff writer Margaret Miceli contributed to this article.