CAMP HILL, CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. -- A good idea that may have been too good: Build-A-Bear stores in the United States ran a 'Pay-Your-Age' promotion where customers could buy a stuffed animal by paying their age.
The promotion drew in huge crowds of excited families at many participating stores.
Because of the masses, employees had to turn away customers in some places.
Central Pennsylvania was no exception.
Employees did not shut down the line at Capital City Mall, but they did stop more people from getting in it just before noon.
People got in line before the store even opened at 9, waiting hours, some with infants, toddlers, and groups of kids.
"At 10 of 9 a.m., we thought we’d just come in, get on line, get in and out, half hour. Almost 6 hours later, here we are!" said Mary Ellen Zettlemoyer, a mother.
“After waiting a few hours, we were kind of invested. So we stayed," said Tiffany Householder, a mom from Shippensburg.
Some people waited nearly 10 hours at the Capital City Mall, all to have their little one’s favorite stuffed animal come to life at Build-A-Bear Workshop.
"It was like an oasis in the desert; you were so close, yet, so far away still!” said Dianna Zimmerman. "Truthfully it’s been great, except maybe the last hour."
Dianna Zimmerman brought 10 children from Di's Daycare.
Those children waited 8 long hours.
“We did play rock, paper, scissor shoot, and then did our hair!" said Ella Gastley.
When you’re stuck in a line that long, things can get stressful.
"There’s a lot of little ones. Everyone’s hungry. Potty breaks," added Zettlemoyer.
Others never made it inside the workshop because all these people created a safety issue.
Build-A-Bear at the Capital City Mall stopped allowing people to enter the line a little before noon.
“It’s just really disappointing because we drove close to two hours to get here for nothing. We can’t even get in the line," said Jennifer Straub, who drove in with her daughter from Selinsgrove.
For the people who could wait it out, the embraces made it all worth it, and the savings weren’t so bad either.
“We probably saved around seventy dollars, so it was a big savings. To be able to get all 3 of them one, and the ones they wanted. it was a big deal," added Householder.
Build-A-Bear at Capital City Mall did sell out of some items, but employees say many popular stuffed animals will not run out of stock.
People who didn't adventure to a store but signed up for the promotion online can also receive a voucher.
Simply log onto your Build-A-Bear Bonus Club by midnight July 15th. Click to print or screenshot the voucher.
The voucher is good for one Bonus Club Account and valid for in-store purchases.
It's good until August 31st, 2018.