There is no shortage of absolutely amazing reception venues for weddings in New Orleans and the surrounding area! My reception coverage is almost completely a purely documentary style. I will typically not attempt to get the attention of the people I am photographing, but instead will try to keep my distance and capture more natural and candid moments, or dive right in to the middle of the dance floor action with a wide-angle lens when the party really gets going. Of course, I am happy to shoot any informal group shots (friends from college, co-workers, etc.) during the reception.
Most New Orleans wedding receptions are 3 hours, occasionally 4 hours, but rarely longer than that, and usually have a buffet-style meal. This can sometimes come as a bit of a surprise to families from some other parts of the country where longer and slower-paced receptions with formal seated dinners are common (though most venues will be able to accommodate that type of seated dinner reception if desired, and I photograph several of those each year).
Of course, a shorter reception doesn't have to mean the party's over at that point, as very often the celebration simply moves to a nearby bar!