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"At the end of the contest," James Kruk says, "I was taking a photo with Linda Thompson, and she whispered in my ear, "You were my favorite."

That's a big statement, considering that James 'King' Kruk is an Elvis impersonator from North County and that Linda Thompson is Elvis' former girlfriend.

"Linda also said that I have Elvis' sense of humor and that I wasn't trying to be Elvis, but that I was doing a terrific job of paying homage to Elvis."

In May, Kruk took second place honors at the Las Vegas Ultimate Elvis contest. "They do it sort of American Idol style, with the judges commenting after each performer. The judges were Thompson, her brother and former Elvis body guard Sam Thompson and a performer who does a Michael Jackson tribute."

Kruk says this was his fourth year in the competition. "I wasn't going to do the contest but Legends in Concert sent me an email saying I could still enter."

The contest was held over two nights. Kruk performed "My Way, "Promised Land," and "Polk Salad Annie."

Kruk can, and does, all three Elvis eras in his night club act. "I did all 70's Elvis in the contest."

Thompson's judging comments to Kruk: "My Way just doesn't get more authentic than that. You have the same vibrato as Elvis, and the same demeanor and stage presence and sincerity as Elvis. There was only one Elvis but you come pretty darn close."

King Kruk came home with $300 dollars in prize money. Kruck says first place and $2,500 dollars went to Chad Givens, "who changed his name to Chad Collins for the contest."

Kruk does not feel at all bruised by his landing in second place. To the contrary: "What second place means is respect on the world stage. It means that I am one of the top Elvis Tributes in the world. It means California, and not only Vegas has world class Elvis entertainment."

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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