There's a lot to see and do throughout the city. During my last visit (June/July 2009) we were closer to the French Quarter and did quite a bit there. We also rented a car for a day and went out to see several of the beautiful plantations along the Mississippi River.
On this trip I was down by the Morial Convention Center so most of what I did was a bit different than my last trip to New Orleans. I did make a lunch visit to Mother's, however, which is a "must do" for me anytime I am in the city. Fortunately, it was convenient and within walking distance of my hotel (Hilton New Orleans Riverside). I enjoyed a roast beef poboy, which really was (still) as good as I remembered them from last summer. For more information on Mother's, check out my IgoUgo review here http://www.igougo.com/review-r1362594-Just_as_Good_as_I_Remembered.html.
The US Soccer Federation hosted an evening aboard the Creole Queen Paddlewheeler. We boarded at 6:45pm for a buffet dinner at 7:00pm. For those who chose to stay, there was a two hour cruise up the Mississippi River. Plenty to eat and an open bar couldn't keep everyone on the boat however. I think a lot of people wanted to get out and see a bit of the city. After all it was Friday night during Mardi Gras season, with a couple of parades in the area not to mention the activities out in the French Quarter.
For those who did stay, we were also treated to an outstanding jazz band, that kept the lower level hopping throughout the cruise.
For those interested in taking the public riverboat trip, check them out at http://www.creolequeen.com/. They offer afternoon and dinner cruises.
At the Riverwalk Marketplace there are a number of shops featuring the work of local artists as well as New Orleans' themed souvenirs and gifts. Of course with the New Orleans Saints in the Super Bowl, many shops had Saints' gear and apparel. Prices seemed about the same as you'd see in any other retail store or mall in a tourist area.
For more information including stores and restaurants that may be found there, go to their website http://www.riverwalkmarketplace.com/.
Can't make it to New Orleans during Mardi Gras season? No worries, you can head out to Mardi Gras World (http://www.mardigrasworld.com/) to experience a bit of the festivities. Tours are available every 30 minutes from 9:30am until 4:30pm. Ticket prices are not posted on their website (poor marketing in my opinion) but I believe I heard they run about $15 for adults. The website suggests that you call in advance to make a tour reservation and purchase tickets (504-361-7821).