Splishing, splashing again at Modesto’s Graceada Park

Scores of people — including lots of kids — gathered Friday afternoon at Graceada Park for the reopening of its children's splash pad and wading pool.

The celebration featured remarks from speakers before the kids frolicked in the splash pad and pool. College area residents Jake and Katie Barber took on the project as a way to honor their son Ryan, who was stillborn May 6, 2017.

The infrastructure for the pool and splash pad was destroyed in fires several years ago. The Barbers were thanked by Mayor Ted Brandvold and Councilwoman Kristi Ah You, and the Barbers thanked all of those who helped them. Speakers said it was an example of Modesto coming together to better the community.

The project cost $240,000, and the Barbers have raised $220,000. They will match donations dollar for dollar to raise the final $20,000. Go to to learn more, including how to donate.

The splash pad is open daily from 2 to 6 p.m. The pool is open for recreational use Mondays through Thursdays from 2:15 to 4:15 p.m. Swim lessons start Monday. Go to for more information.