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The City of Bethlehem Community and Economic Development Permit Office will be closed Wednesday afternoons to walk-ins from 1 to 4:30pm. This temporary closure is due to the digitization of the permit files. Thank you for your patience and understanding.


Charles A. Brown Ice House

The Charles A. Brown Ice House is a performing arts venue located on Sand Island. It is home to Ice House Tonight and the Pennsylvania Youth Theatre .

Information on Ice House Tonight programming, please contact:
Email : 

Information on Pennsylvania Youth Theatre programming, please contact:

Performing groups not affiliated with the above groups can contact the recreation office for information on renting the facility.

‚ÄčHistory of the Ice House...
The Ice House opened in the 1880's and was owned privately until the City of Bethlehem purchased it in 1963 as a part of a plan to restore recreational use to Sand Island. Initially ice operations continued, but that ended in 1976, and the building became vacant, except for its use as a  storage facility. 

It wasn't until Charlie Brown, the Director of Parks and Public Property at the time, had a vision to turn it into a venue for youth theater, puppet shows, and community events, that the focus began to change. After much planning and persistence, this vision became a reality in the mid 1990's. About 10 years later, in 2007, City leaders decided to rename the building to recognize its biggest champion, Charles A. Brown.

Today the legacy of Charlie Brown is alive and well as the Ice House continues to thrive as a performing arts center in the heart of the City.