Orgullo de Nuestras Raices - By: Maribel Tory

The Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade of WNY is proud to announce the theme for 2015 is “Orgullo de Nuestras Raíces”/Pride in our Roots. Each year we reach out to the Hispanic community and ask them to help us select a theme. Once the theme has been selected we go out once more and ask them to get creative and come up with the best art that would describe this theme. Not only is the winner’s art going to be displayed in various newspapers, posters and shirts, but the winner will also receive $250.00. At this time we would like to thank everyone that took the time to participate in this contest. We received some great submissions, and we ask you to continue being creative and never stop drawing. We truly have some talented Hispanic Artists right here in WNY.

The winner of the 2015 “Orgullo de Nuestras Raíces”/Pride in our Roots theme art is Maribel Tory. Not only were we truly touched by Maribel’s art, but Maribel’s letter was heartwarming as well, so we thought it would be great to share with you. Congratulations Maribel. You did an incredible job on this year’s theme art and we are very proud of the young lady you are becoming.

The Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade of WNY

My name is Maribel Tory. I am Colombian and I have been in buffalo for almost 8 years now. I graduated from Orchard Park High School in 2011 and then went to Erie Community College to work on my associate’s degree. After I graduated from ECC, I transferred to Buffalo State College to work on my Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Design. I’m now a Junior at Buffalo State with a Major in Fashion Designer and a concentration on Textiles. I am a person who is positive about every aspect of life. I believe in success through hard work & dedication. My favorite hobby has never changed since I was young, and that is art. I have been drawing since the age of 7 years old and I love it. It has never stopped and even now, whenever I have a pencil at hand with my notebook or a piece of paper, I will create and draw. I like art because it expresses creativity and individualism. It makes you think twice about what’s on the outside; art allows you to dive deeper to explore what's underneath of the exterior. Everything around us is art; jewelry, clothes, the vehicles we drive, even the nude body is art. And I think all forms are just beautiful and incredibly fascinating!

The Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade of WNY have greatly encouraged the traditional values, music, costumes, and folklore of each participating country. The parade allows proud people to wave their respective flags, unite as one, and share a cultural experience with other. This year’s theme is “Orgullo de Nuestras Raices”, so I tried to come up with a piece of art that would represent our Hispanic roots. Creating art is what I love best and I think this piece of art will be a perfect representation for the Puerto Rico & Hispanic Day Parade. As you can see, the painting has a tree in the middle with flags coming out of the branches and if you look closer, the tree has a form of a women’s body. Each branch has a different flag representing each Latino country. You can think of a tree as a whole "world", such as all the branches are countries, and together they make up a Hispanic culture. All the branches on the tree are separate but come from the same tree, but in different sizes and forms, so I think it’s a great way to represent all the different countries coming from a similar background. The bright colors are there to represent how Latinos are, we are always happy, enjoying life, passionate about everything, friendly, always trying to help others, etc. The instruments on each side of the painting are there to represent each culture and all the different music that is played in each country. Art is a way of seeing the world, a way of expression, often times a compulsion: we simply must create!

I look forward to hearing from you soon. If you need any more information, please let me know.


Maribel Tory



Panorama Hispano is the regional news and information newspaper for Hispanic and other diverse communities.

US Hispanics are now the largest ethnic minority in the United States numbering 54.2 million as of July 2014. Serving: Buffalo, Rochester, Fredonia, Niagara Falls, NY and Erie, PA. Outside our Market area: Visit our affiliate at:

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