Electric heaters make it fun and easy to ring in the New Year outdoors

My friends and I enjoyed a fun New Year's outdoors with a little help from an electric heater

I had a wonderful New Year's Eve this year. Boston puts on an all-day event called First Night that is a real treat – it takes place all throughout the city, from Back Bay to the waterfront. Along the way, you can check out incredible ice sculptures, musical performances and a spectacular fireworks finale at the harbor – one that we didn't want to miss.

With a group of friends in tow, I hit the town in the early evening for a dinner on Newbury Street, followed by a visit to the Boylston Street plaza to marvel at this year's sculptures – my personal favorite featured two snorkelers diving near the Great Barrier Reef.

Of course, the only reason that all that ice is able to hold together is Boston's brisk winter weather – the thermostat registered a biting 20 degrees. I'm sure that's nice and cozy if you're a block of ice, but after a few hours out in the cold, we started to have second thoughts about the fireworks show.

Determined not to let our night end early, we searched for a restaurant in the Seaport District with a nice view. Fortunately, we found one on the harbor's edge that offered outdoor seating with an electric heater in every corner to keep patrons warm. It seems like the outdoor heating idea is catching on – I wrote about another local eatery that uses electric heaters to make its signature patio seating available year-round.

My friends and I enjoyed piping hot Irish Coffees on the toasty patio porch as the impressive fireworks display lit up the night sky above us. I was grateful that the cold didn't force us indoors earlier than we expected, and I'd say it was the perfect way to usher in 2013!

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