Ye Loyal Krewe of Grace O'Malley was formed in 1992 when fourteen women, active in the Tampa community, had a vision about forming an all female Krewe, as a social organization. Their inspiration being Grace O'Malley, a real female Irish pirate from the 16th century.
Today with over 250 members strong, the Krewe participates in over seven parades, including Gasparilla, Sant'Yago Knight Parade, Rough Riders St. Patrick's Day Parade, the Children's Parade, Springtime Tallahassee, Chasco and Hernando DeSoto.
The O'Malley's had their own float built and completed in 2007, which they are very proud of, and continue to make progress on improving and embellishing this beautiful float The magnificent castle/float is named after Grace O'Malley's own castle, ROCKFLEET. It sports an impressive moving seahorse on the front and can be seen at ALL parades.
The seahorse is our mascot. Krewe members clamor for what we call "seahorse sightings" around local establishments and purchase just about anything that adorns a Seahorse. It is a collecting frenzy within the Krewe to see who finds the best items.
Krewe gowns are worn for parades and special events and appearances are 16th Century grand court gowns, which were chosen to differentiate these beautiful lady pirates from the Krewe of Gasparilla. In 1993, our first parade and being the very first all female Krewe in the Gasparilla parade, the intent was to stand out, therefore choosing this fashionable style of dress. We are known as "Ladies of Grace" in accordance with our costuming. Many of the gowns are sewn and designed by the members themselves, however there are many 16th Century dresssmakers who are also contracted by members, Most members adorn more than one dress, many for each specific parade, as they take much pride in their ornate, period costuming.
The O'Malley's established their motto as "Fun, Friendship and Frivolity" and it is the foundation of which this Krewe was built and still continues to live by within their daily organizational and community activities.
The O'Malley (President) is installed in March and reigns through the following February. Her Celebration Ball is a Grand Event and is one of the high points of the krewe year.
Invitation is by the lottery system and new members must already be volunteers in the Tampa Bay community to be considered and accepted into Ye Loyal Krewe of Grace O'Malley.