Toppers Pizza Wants A Big Slice of A Small Pie

According to, “on a recent homecoming weekend at the University of Wisconsin‘s Whitewater campus, home to 10,000 students, the intersection of Main Street and Center Street was swollen with bar-hopping students. At closing time, 2:15 a.m., the munchies kicked in, and Toppers Pizza, the one joint in town open till 3, was there to serve.”

“‘On Homecoming Saturday, we served about 700 orders,’ says Matt Ziemann, 27, manager of Toppers’ flagship store in Whitewater. ‘We had upwards of 50 people packed into the lobby from 1:30 a.m. to 3 a.m.'”

“The crowds can get pretty rowdy. On one occasion, a particularly rambunctious group pulled the bathroom sink out of the wall. Ziemann has since made an adjustment: ‘I put my biggest employee, a six-foot, five-inch 275-pound dude right in front of the counter to make sure things ran smoothly.’ Three-quarters of the Whitewater location’s revenue come from deliveries, many of them after-hours. “I had a drunk girl chasing me up the stairs in an apartment complex near campus,” recalls delivery driver Casey Benner, 23. “She was pulling on my arms slurring, ‘Toppers guy, I loove you!’–and of course, trying to get the pizza out of my delivery bag.” In his eight-month stint, Benner has been offered free drinks (that he politely declined), phone numbers and a trip aboard a rock band’s tour bus. On a good night, Benner banks $150 in tips.”