Not everyone left a Build-a-Bear Workshop promotion with a deal to cuddle with, and their frustration showed internationally on social media.
The first-ever Pay Your Age Day was billed as a chance for people to pay their age for any stuffed animal in the stores — a catchy idea for parents since the minimum price was set at a mere $1 and the maximum at $29.
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Pay Your Age Day was intended for the company’s bonus club members, but it appears the opportunity gained more publicity than anticipated.
A bear can start at $12 or $14, depending on the size of it, with most around $30. Accessories, like voice recorders, clothes and hats, can increase the price.
People posted videos of lines wrapping inside and even outside malls.
People from the U.K. to the U.S. and Canada vented on social media, posting that they waited in lines for hours before stores sold out and cut the promotion short.
Numerous posts detailed the crying that followed.
One person tweeted that staff in Belfast had been assaulted in front of children, calling it “Build a bear carnage.”
In other posts, people said they were offered vouchers to make amends for the shortage, but some reported even vouchers were in short supply.
Build-a-Bear issued a statement to let customers know it was closing lines at U.S. stories due to crowd safety concerns.
“We understand some of our Guests are disappointed and we will reach out directly as soon as possible,” the statement said.