The exact number of parades that take place in New Orleans during Mardi Gras may vary by year. According to the parade schedule published by the New Orleans Times-Picayune, there were about 90 parades scheduled over 15 days during the 2014 Carnival season, which begins on January 6 each year. On the official day of Mardi Gras, there were 12 parades scheduled to roll throughout the day, with the first beginning at 8 a.m.
In addition to the multiple parades that happen during the Mardi Gras celebrations each year, there is typically a wide variety of other activities scheduled as part of New Orleans' Carnival events, including balls, public and private parties, concerts and general street revelry in places like the French Quarter. Some of the bigger parade organizations, or krewes, may throw massive parties known as 'extravaganzas' in large public places such as the Superdome or the Convention Center. These extravaganzas offer audiences a chance to take part in parade festivities in addition to attending a large concert and party.