By mvitale, OCNJDaily
Ocean City has done it again.
In a statewide poll, beachgoers have chosen the resort community as “New Jersey’s Favorite Beach.”
What may seem even more amazing is the fact that Ocean City has done it not once, not twice, not even three times, but eight times in a row, according to a city press release.
On Friday morning, representatives of N.J. Sea Grant Consortium announced the winners of the annual contest in a presentation at the Ocean City Music Pier.
Ocean City dignitaries, including officials from the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce and the mayor and city administration, were among those in attendance.
“We are thrilled for Ocean City to be voted NJ’s Favorite Beach again this year. Ocean City is a town filled with family tradition and we all take pride in that,” Michele Gillian, executive director of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, said after the ceremony.
She continued, “Year after year, generation after generation, people return to America’s Greatest Family Resort for its safe, clean, family fun. It’s an honor for so many people to vote for Ocean City. We couldn’t be happier.”
The contest is decided by online voters who are prevented from voting more than once. The announcement comes in time for the big Fourth of July weekend for all shore communities.
Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian congratulated everyone who helped make the achievement possible during the ceremony Friday.
“The recognition is a testament to the hard work of the city team, the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, the Tourism Development Commission, the Boardwalk and Downtown Merchants associations, local businesses, all-volunteer groups, and the entire community in making Ocean City a superior place to live, work and play,” Gillian said.
This year, the contest again included winners for the four coastal counties.
Neighboring Sea Isle City also took home a huge honor, placing second overall for “New Jersey’s Favorite Beach.”
Debuting in 2008 as New Jersey’s “Top Ten Beaches,” the consortium survey was initially designed to encourage friendly competition and camaraderie among popular Jersey Shore communities along the coast, according to a press release.
Following Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the contest was rebranded “Favorite Beaches” to diversify results so that all areas of the state’s oceanfront would be recognized to create a sense of unity and support, officials said.
The honor bestowed on the city is among the many that have been given over the years. Ocean City has been named “Best Beach in America” and “Best Beach” in other polls.
“America’s Greatest Family Resort” also has been recognized for its Boardwalk, downtown, ecotourism, family destinations, women-owned businesses, and more.