|This article does not cite any references or sources. (April 2011)|
1998 saw the birth of Mardi Gras' first Cyber Krewe, KOE and its members are from all over the world. Two Internet "netheads" founded it and it is made up of fellow Internet junkies devoted to Mardi Gras. KOE is a non-profit club that parades throughout the French Quarter on Fat Tuesday. There are a number of costumed marching krewes that parade through the Quarter and surrounding areas each Mardi Gras, but KOE was the first organized over the internet consisting mostly of out-of-towners who enjoyed New Orleans Mardi Gras.
KOE members regularly gather on their members page for posts and cyber chats to stay in touch throughout the year. Memberships are open to the public and currently over 150 strong.
KOE’s first Lundi Gras party was held in 1999 and it remains as the official beginning of each year's KOE’s Mardi Gras. The annual KOE Lundi Gras party is held Monday, the day before Fat Tuesday. Members gather at a French Quarter tavern to renew friendships, greet new members and trade special throws.
The KOE is known for their unique throws. Krewe members bring along beads, doubloons and trinkets to throw or hand out to the Mardi Gras crowds. Beads are always a popular throw and can be purchased at many Internet sites. Special KOE themed throws are items which Krewe members bring that support the theme that is chosen for each years parade. In addition to the themed items, many members spend the year creating special throws which are shared with each other at the Lundi Gras party. The crowds love beads and throws and the members have fun giving them away.
KOE Theme Medallions were first created in 2004 with the Pink Cadillac. The Show Girl followed in 2005. In 2006 the KOE Pops the Big Top was a prized catch and the 2007 throw of "KOE Shakes its Booty on the 7 Seas" The 2008 theme "The West Is History" celebrated the KOE's 10th Anniversary and for the first time the parade was led by a New Orleans Jazz Marching Band. The 2009 theme was "KOE Fables and Fairytales" The KOE celebrated MG with a "HOLIDAZE" theme in 2010.In 2011 the KOE Flew high and celebrated Mardi Gras with its theme "KOE is Spaced Out". all sorts of interesting space themed costumes were worn. 2012 the KOE marched to the theme of "Its a Jungle out there" In 2013 the KOE paraded through the streets of the French quarter with their "Barnyard Bash". In 2104, be on the look out for a few Kings and several Queens, as they take on the day with the theme of "A Knight in Camelot" as they celebrate their 16th anniversary.
On Mardi Gras Day, the parade starts with the Krewe gathering in front of St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square. The members follow a route through the French Quarter that takes them to predestined “Libation Stations” along the route. Costumes bring out the creativeness of KOE members. Each member dresses according to the theme of that year.
The KOE march begins at 10:30 AM on a predetermined route. As the members proceed throughout the streets, you can see the revelers lining up to catch a glimpse of the outlandish costumed members hoping to catch a prized throw. Along the way they stop for TV and newspaper crews and for fans to snap photos.
As soon as the Mardi Gras is over the Captain and lieutenants begin work on the next year's theme and activities.