Giant Lucky Cat beckons revellers to Canberra's Night Noodle Markets

Emma Kelly
Event manager of operations Alexandra Burgess  with Lucky Cat, who will welcome Canberrans to the Night Noodle Markets ...
Event manager of operations Alexandra Burgess with Lucky Cat, who will welcome Canberrans to the Night Noodle Markets from Friday. Photo: Melissa Adams

Their wide grins and flapping paws are ubiquitous in Asian restaurants, supermarkets and giftshops.

But not many maneki-neko, or fortune cats, believed to bring good luck and attract customers, stand six metres high. 

The three metre-wide inflatable Lucky Cat will beckon Canberrans to the city's first Night Noodle Markets from Friday - and hopefully provide just enough charm to fend off any chance of wet weather.  

Friday and Saturday are forecast to stay dry but there is a chance of showers on Sunday. 

Event manager of operations Alexandra Burgess hoped Lucky Cat would live up to his name in the capital.

She said the fat white feline had already become a bit of an icon at the Sydney and Melbourne markets.

And he could be well on his way to the kind of social media stardom awarded to another Canberra-based cat, the famous Zanda.

"Lucky Cat probably needs his own hashtag by now - he's very well received," Ms Burgess said.

"We think he brings good fortune to the event."

Unlike some of the surrounding galleries that will be lit up during Enlighten, which coincides with the markets, the white feline is expected to attract quite the number of selfie sticks, or at least cameras and smartphones.

"Everyone likes to pose in front of him and get a picture," Ms Burgess said.

"A lot of kids like to get involved."

Ms Burgess said last-minute preparations were on track with lanterns being hung and food soon to be delivered.

She said the markets would not only be the perfect place to fill bellies but a stunning vantage point for the 300 illuminated paper boats floating along Lake Burley Griffin as part of Enlighten.

"It's all coming along really well," she said.

"We've found during our time talking to people in different restaurants, everyone seems to know the Night Noodle Markets are coming and are looking forward to coming down and sampling some quality Asian cuisine."

The Enlighten Night Noodle Markets start this Friday, February 27 and  run till March 8. Stalls open 5pm on weekdays and 4pm on weekends. The markets are accompanied by special dinners, lunches and offers for the Canberra Times Good Food Month which runs until March 15.