Build-A-Bear abandons ‘Pay Your Age Day’ due to overwhelming crowds

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Customers hoping to “pay your age” to buy a Build-A-Bear Thursday are out of luck as lines have been closed across the U.S. and Canada --including those in the Piedmont-Triad -- due to crowds clamoring for the deal, the company said.

Build-A-Bear lines at Hanes Mall in Winston-Salem Thursday

“Per local authorities, we cannot accept additional Guests at our U.S. Build-A-Bear Workshop locations due to crowd and safety concerns,” the company said shortly after 11 a.m.

“We have closed lines in our U.S. stores. We understand some of our Guests are disappointed and we will reach out directly as soon as possible.”

The company announced the promotion on Tuesday as a way “to kick off its new, everyday celebration of birthdays.” Customers would be allowed to pay their current age for any make-your-own furry friend in all stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

Depending on the size, collection and accessories, stuffed animals from Build-A-Bear can cost between $16 and $75.

Massive lines appeared outside Build-A-Bear workshops in the U.S., Canada and the UK.

Hundreds of hopeful customers showed up to Hanes Mall in Winston-Salem and Friendly Center in Greensboro.

Build-A-Bear lines at Friendly Center in Greensboro Thursday

BBC reports that police officers were called to several shopping centers to keep the peace and customers reported waiting in line for about five hours.

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