Itatí Cantoral, star of the Mexican telenovela “Amores con trampa,” has been named as Mr. Amigo 2015, officials announced in Brownsville today.
About 100 people stood up and cheered as Mr. Amigo Association President Cynthia Garza Galvan introduced Cantoral during a ceremony this morning in Texas Southmost College’s International Technology, Education and Commerce Center.
Cantoral’s late father, Mexican composer Roberto Cantoral García, resided in Rancho Viejo, making the Rio Grande Valley a home for the Cantoral family.
“Brownsville means the most beautiful thing that I have had in my life,” Itatí Cantoral said in Spanish. “It is what has made me an artist. It was what has made me a woman, and it is what has made me a mother.”
Brownsville Mayor Tony Martinez said a bicultural environment is the way to go throughout the world.
“Let’s show the world what bicultural means, let’s show the world what family means,” Martinez said. “Let’s show the world what community means, and once Mr. Amigo is announced today, let’s tell people, ‘This is Mr. Amigo, not only for Brownsville and Matamoros, but for the entire world.’”
The Mr. Amigo Association honors a Mexican citizen each year to promote international friendship and goodwill between the U.S. and Mexico. The honoree is recognized during the city’s Charro Days Fiesta in late February. Brownsville’s sister city, Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico, holds Fiestas Mexicanas at the same time.
Mr. Amigo is a Mexican citizen whose lifework embodies international endeavors of culture, commerce, entertainment and other meaningful binational dialogue, according to a news release from the association.
Cantoral will be presented with the Mr. Amigo bronze plaque and other expressions of friendship throughout the weeklong celebration.
UTRGV will welcome Mr. Amigo during a ceremony Feb. 25 in the TSC Art Center.
The celebration will kickoff with the Baile del Sol Street Dance Feb. 21. The Brownsville Independent School District Children’s Charro Days Parade begins at 2:30 p.m. Feb. 25. The Illuminated Parade begins at 7 p.m. Feb. 26. The Grand International Parade begins at 1 p.m. Feb. 27. All parades go down Elizabeth Street through Historic Downtown in Brownsville.
For more information on Charro Days events, visit www.charrodaysfiesta.com/events.htm.