YSU’s Inner Circle Pizza Announces Permanent Closure 

Photo by Rachel Gobep

YSU’s Inner Circle Pizza Announces Permanent Closure 

When students gathered for classes at the start of the fall 2019 semester at Youngstown State University, many were looking forward to stopping by Inner Circle Pizza for an order of Buffalo wings and fries along with an ice cold beer to greet old friends and make new ones. 

But when students walked up to the front door, they were greeted by a sign that read, “Closed for summer break,” which has been taped to the front entrance since the end of the spring semester. 

Customers were stunned and a little confused as to why the restaurant never returned to its normal operating hours at the start of fall term.

According to a WKBN web article, the owner of the property, Stephen Stefanic, said he is experiencing health issues and can no longer continue running the business with interested buyers in the building.

The Inner Circle Pizza YSU location is marked as permanently closed on Google. It reads: “Inner Circle PIZZA-YSU is recorded closed at this location.” 

The location has been a YSU landmark since the 1970s and still held a significant impact as a place for students to hang out with friends, grab a bite to eat in between classes and kick up their feet to relax after a stressful day.

Many generations of Penguins have made their mark at the YSU Inner Circle, from one class to the next, in hopes of keeping the operations up and running for years to come. 

Inner Circle Pizza was not just a hot spot for students to gather throughout the day. It was also a place of employment for students and the community as bartenders, hosts, servers and cooks. 

Many Inner Circle Pizza patrons took their frustration and concerns to Twitter, creating Inner Circle Twitter accounts providing daily updates on Inner Circle’s status.

According to a Twitter post by user @hollymm16, who claims to be a former employee, Inner Circle Pizza failed to notify her of its closing and she had to learn through a news article. 

The tweet states, “Working at a new place after you’ve been at your previous job for seven years feels really weird.” 

The Jambar staff reached out to her for further comments, but she did not respond by the time this article was published.  

Students will no longer have a place to study in between classes while enjoying the numerous meal options or attending weekly open mic night sessions hosted by Tom Metheney to sing along to country tunes. 

While business was booming during the day, the nightlife was like no other.

The abrupt closure of Inner Circle Pizza sparked gossip among the student body and left everyone wondering for the first weeks of the semester what would be the final call on the business.

With almost 50 years of putting smiles on students’ faces, Inner Circle’s closure will forever change the campus lifestyle, and students will reminisce about the memories formed at the pizza joint at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Elm Street.