CYPRESS — For 55 hours, much of it in broiling heat, Jesus Vega avoided slurping sodas that might prompt a belch that would pop his lips from the boat. Instead, he propped himself on pillows, slicked his lips with a gel and concentrated on his promise to his four daughters.
Nearby, Maureen Huertas, 23, of Garden Grove wore a neck brace and mouth guard to ease the stress of prolonged boat kissing.
At 7 p.m. Saturday, after polling a crowd of onlookers, officials decided to call the Kiss of the Century contest at Los Alamitos Race Course a draw, said Mike Walker, a spokesman for Yamaha Marine Group, one of the contest's sponsors.
Vega, a 37-year-old cement finisher from Buena Park, and Huertas each will get a $15,000, 17-foot Century fishing boat, beating out 18 other contestants who began the boat-kissing contest Thursday.