A 63-year-old Canadian man traveled more than 200 miles to Toronto to fulfill a lifelong dream of visiting the Legoland Discovery Centre, only to be turned away by a rule that prohibits adults from entering without a child. John St-Onge of Windsor, Ont., says he feels discriminated against and embarrassed after he and his daughter, Nicole St-Onge, saved up to make the 3-hour trip.
A retired custodian from a steel plant, John suffers from cancer, diabetes and recently had heart surgery, according to CTVNews.ca. Because he is unable to travel to the Legoland flagship in Denmark, he thought the Toronto location would be more realistic.
St-Onge spends his winters indoors because of his health and keeps busy with Lego projects. A fan of Lego since his children were born, St-Onge continued to break down and rebuild their Lego sets long after they were grown. He now has about 75 sets comprised of 50,000 Lego pieces.
“It’s a Lego House,” he joked to CTVNews.ca.
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"They wouldn't let us go in and so we asked to see a manager," Nicole said. "Five minutes later, the employee came back and said the manager was too busy to see us, but that was their policy, they weren't allowed in without a child and there was nothing they could do about it."
Sadly, they headed back to Windsor.
"It made me feel awful," St-Onge said. "I felt discriminated against. I thought what the heck is the reason for this? If they gave me a reason maybe I could understand but they gave me no reason."
"I was crushed," Nicole said. "My dad is 63 years old, he was devastated. The look on his face was like a child not getting the gift at Christmas that they want. He felt discriminated against because he's a senior citizen who also happens to like Lego."
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Lara Hannaford, marketing manager at the Vaughan Mills Legoland, said it was unfortunate that they were unable to see a manager, but that the rule is posted on flyers and at locations
Hannaford explained the rule was put in place because "it is a child attraction so we do have this in place to protect the families and children that visit."
She said adult-only nights are held at Legoland once a month.