By Donald WittkowskiThe magazine that gave Ocean City oodles of free national publicity last year by crowning it as the “Best Beach in America” will feature the resort town again in an upcoming issue.Michele Gillian, executive director of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, revealed Thursday night that Coastal Living Magazine plans to publicize one of the island’s wackiest Memorial Day weekend traditions.Known as the Business Persons Plunge, the annual event features hundreds of nattily attired men and women marching blithely into the surf to kick off what city officials hope will be a busy summer tourism season.Speaking during the Chamber of Commerce’s annual installation dinner of officers and board members, Gillian told the audience that Coastal Living contacted the city on Thursday for information about the Business Persons Plunge. The magazine plans to publish an item about the plunge in its May edition and may also highlight other Ocean City events, she said.“They asked about all special events that are unique to Ocean City,” Gillian said in an interview.Ocean City has established a lucrative relationship with Coastal Living that began with the town’s selection in 2016 as the “Best Beach in America” in a nationwide online poll conducted by the magazine.2017 Board Members of the Chamber of CommerceThe city was able to leverage the national publicity generated by the award to attract more tourists. Gillian is hopeful for similar results when Coastal Living highlights the Business Persons Plunge, which is scheduled for May 26, the Friday before Memorial Day.“The Best Beach in America award got so many people interested in Ocean City,” Gillian said. “To be featured in Coastal Living Magazine again is really an asset. They realize that Ocean City is the place to be.”The zany Business Persons Plunge underscores just how far the city will go to promote tourism during the all-important summer vacation season. The event is coupled with the city’s annual “Unlocking of the Ocean” ceremony to celebrate the start of summer during Memorial Day weekend.Cape May County Freeholder Jeff Pierson, who also addressed the Chamber of Commerce installation dinner, said visitors are enamored with Ocean City’s Boardwalk, amusements and other family-friendly attractions.“What I see happening in Ocean City is fantastic,” Pierson said.Another speaker, Cape May County Surrogate M. Susan Sheppard, told the audience that she is proud to be from Ocean City.“Ocean City is my home and my heart. I’ll always be an Ocean City girl,” Sheppard said.The Chamber of Commerce dinner, held at the Flanders Hotel, also featured the swearing in of the organization’s officers and board members by Mayor Jay Gillian.Cape May County Freeholder Brigadier General Jeffrey Pierson addressed the Ocean City Chamber of Commerce. Mayor Jay Gillian and Surrogate Judge Susan Sheppard look on.Sworn in as Chamber president was Carol Heenan of Garden Court Estates. Taking office as first vice president was Dave Allegretto of Fortress Financial.The Chamber’s second vice presidents include Robert H. Adams, of Tidelines Management Services Inc.; Thomas Aromando, of Fitzpatrick, Bongiovanni and Kelly; Cricket Frank, of Impala Island Inn; Pat Gallelli, of Tahiti Inn; Gary Jessel, of Fox Real Estate; Scott Halliday, of Halliday-Leonard Contractors; Phil Perri, of Forum Motor Inn; Mark Reimet, of Ocean City Financial Group; and Ken Sedberry, of Berger Realty.Brian Broadley, of Broadley’s MDI, was sworn in as treasurer and Kim Davidson, of OceanFirst Bank, took office as secretary. Michele Gillian, executive director of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, is touting new features that are planned for the vacation app this summer.