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Build-A-Bear promotion forces lines to shut down due to crowds

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FREEHOLD -

A marketing campaign offering to “pay your age” at Build-A-Bear Workshop locations led to massive crowds all over the country.

The chance to pay as little as $1 for a new stuffed bear meant that thousands of people showed up at malls across the country, including the Freehold Raceway Mall. Crowds became so large that the company was ordered to shut down the lines due to safety concerns.

“We were about to turn around and I'm glad we didn't,” said mother Kimberly Murray. “We waited a long time. We were one of the first and it's nuts now.”

Inside the mall, the line stretched around most of the building while children waited to get their new stuffed friend. Parents tell News 12 New Jersey that the employees remained engaged with each child as they helped them make their stuffed animal.

But the long lines were a little much for some.

“Actually it hasn’t been awful yet, it’s getting there,” said mother Mary Taveara. “The 3-year-old is getting impatient.”

Because the lines were shut down early and some stores ran out of merchandize, Build-A-Bear says that the company will issue vouchers. Some customers were able to receive the vouchers at the store. Others can get a voucher if they log into their accounts by midnight on July 15.

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