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Build-A-Bear offers discount after pulling out of promo

| Thursday, July 12, 2018, 1:15 p.m.
A bin filled with bears waiting to be stuffed, and donated to children who have a deployed military parent, Saturday, May 15, 2004, at Build-A-Bear Workshop in St. Louis. Build-A-Bear Workshop, a store where customers can make customized stuffed animals, let children and families help make 40,000 bears last week, which were donated to children who have a deployed military parent. (AP Photo/Stephanie S. Cordle)
ASSOCIATED PRESS
A bin filled with bears waiting to be stuffed, and donated to children who have a deployed military parent, Saturday, May 15, 2004, at Build-A-Bear Workshop in St. Louis. Build-A-Bear Workshop, a store where customers can make customized stuffed animals, let children and families help make 40,000 bears last week, which were donated to children who have a deployed military parent. (AP Photo/Stephanie S. Cordle)

ALLENTOWN — Chaotic lines reported across the country Thursday prompted Build-A-Bear Workshop to end a promotion only hours after it began.

The stuffed animal retailer held a "Pay Your Age Day" event Thursday, where stuffed animals that normally cost upwards of $20 were on sale for the age of the customer.

But lines at stores quickly got out of hand Thursday morning as parents and kids rushed to get in on the bargain.

At the Lehigh Valley Mall, people were waiting for hours in a line that wrapped around the entire facility.

By 11 a.m., the retailer announced on its Facebook page that the event was off.

 

Around 6 p.m., Build-A-Bear emailed its "Bonus Club" members explaining that they will receive a $15 discount off their next "Make-Your-Own-Furry-Friend" visit. The company said it's the same voucher given to guests who waited in line were turned away.

Members must claim the discount online by July 15, while the coupon redeemable until Aug. 31.

"Per local authorities, we cannot accept additional Guests at our locations due to crowds and safety concerns," the post said. "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."

Thousands of upset customers quickly responded to the post, some expressing disappointment at walking away empty-handed after waiting in line for hours.

"Thanks for disappointing a ton of kids ... because your decided to have a quick marketing grab with ZERO planning. Amazing," Facebook user Kerri Klerk wrote.

Others blasted the complainers for overreacting.

"All these people complaining about letting their kids down," Megg Wallen wrote. "I'm pretty sure your kid will survive without an additional toy to add to their massive collection because you want to pay $8 instead of $25. Maybe use this as a lesson to teach your kid that sometimes things don't work out."

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