Why do we say that? | Close but no cigar

Why do we say that?: “Close but no cigar”

Why do we say that?

If you’ve ever tried to guess the answer to a question and not quite gotten it right, maybe you’ve heard the expression “close, but no cigar!” It’s an expression used to indicate that someone has come very close to achieving something, but didn’t quite make it.

Back in the early 1920s fairs and carnivals were very popular, and many of the games would give out prizes. As anyone who has played a game at a fair before has probably noticed, often these games are all or nothing sorts of games: if you win you get a prize, if you lose you get nothing.  Cigars at one point in time were popular prizes to be aimed for, which very likely led to the origin of the phrase. If a player came close to winning but not close enough they may have heard the game attendant say “close, but no cigar!”

Fort Edmonton Park will reopen in May for the 2017 summer season. Try your hand at the games of skill (extra cost) or have a great time on any of the Midway rides (free with your admission!).