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Steve Ross, son of TV personality Bob Ross, to lead painting class and display original work at Watersmeet casino

Bob Ross graced public television for years with his honey-smooth voice on the PBS series The Joy of Painting. Now, decades after the show premiered, his son, artist Steve Ross, will grace the Northwoods with his presence.

Public television personality Bob Ross became popular for his relaxing painting show in the 80s, known for expressions like, “we don’t make mistakes, we just have happy accidents.”

His show has seen a resurgence since the pandemic began. His YouTube channel has 5 million subscribers and Netflix released a documentary last summer about his career.

Ross’s legacy lives on through his business – and through his son.

“That is really what Bob wanted ultimately is to pass the torch from what he learned to his own son,” says Michael Broderick, the general manger at the Northern Waters Casino Resort in Watersmeet.

The casino is hosting Ross’s son – Steve Ross – in its contemporary art space this summer.

“I’ve seen some of (Steve Ross’s) work up close and in person, and it is just masterful. It is masterful, it is delicate and nuanced and it’s really beautiful,” Broderick says. “It’s gone beyond what you might have seen back in the 80s on television to something even better and more exciting.”

Steve Ross appeared with his father on television several times.

Jewel Grosso

The casino resort is showing a collection of Steve Ross’s original work in his first ever public show. Some of Bob Ross’s work will also be on display.

Broderick says the Northwoods is the perfect setting to show the pair’s work.

“We just really felt that we were the correct place and environment and space to show this work, to allow people to come in and see it and to really realize what this man is to American art history,” he says.

The art show is free and open to the public. It’ll open on June 24.

Steve Ross will be in attendance on opening night. He’ll host a painting class the next day.

Tickets for the painting class are limited and for sale for $150.

Erin Gottsacker worked at WXPR as a Morning Edition host and reporter from December 2020 to January 2023. During her time at the station, Erin reported on the issues that matter most in the Northwoods.
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