Build-A-Bear closes lines for 'Pay Your Age Day' as stores receive overwhelming crowds

CLEVELAND - Parents and children who flocked to Build-A-Bear stores across Northeast Ohio for 'Pay Your Age Day' event may find themselves out of luck as the company announced it was closing off lines into their stores both in the U.S. and Canada.

Long lines started outside the Build-A-Bear store at the Strongsville Mall. Parents documented their time waiting in line, with some posting relief that they made it to the cutoff.

Build-A-Bear released the following statement to its customers across the country.

Per local authorities, we cannot accept additional Guests at our locations due to crowds and safety concerns. We have closed lines in our U.S. and Canada stores. We understand some Guests are disappointed and we will reach out directly as soon as possible

Build-A-Bear turned away 150 people with 3,000 people coming to South Park alone for the event, according to Ed Jaroszewicz, marketing director for the mall, who released the following statement.

Build-A-Bear announced late last week they would be hosting a promotion titled, “Pay Your Age”. Guests could build a bear at any Build-A-Bear location for the cost of their age, with a maximum of $29 and a limit of one bear purchased per guest.

Response to this promotion was tremendous, with a line extending from Build-A-Bear up North Main wrapping back through Center Court and down to Macy’s. We estimate several thousand guests waited in line until Build-A-Bear cut the line off. At that point vouchers for a discounted purchase were distributed to those who couldn’t make it into the store today.

It was a terrific promotion, and while not all of the guests who showed up could take advantage, the turnout for the Build-A-Bear brand was unbelievable and those guests will have the opportunity to purchase a discounted bear through August 4th.

Build-A-Bear handed out $15 vouchers to those who were turned away in line.

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