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Brought to you by John Sciarra, Bernard's Garage - AUTOMOTIVE INSIDER -

BERNARD'S GARAGE - John SciarraSummer's imminent arrival means your vehicle's air conditioning system will soon be under serious strain.

If your A/C isn't as frosty as it used to be, but it's still blowing cold, the system may need to be recharged.

Manufacturers used to use a type of refrigerant known as R-12, or Freon, until researchers found it caused ozone depletion. As such, it's illegal to use Freon in vehicles built after 1994. Now, manufacturers use R-134a to keep things cold in the cabin.

Working on an air conditioning system is about as much fun as sticking your hand in a blender. Twice.

Unless you are skilled in vehicle maintenance, it’s safest to take the job to a professional.

An AC compressor is usually driven by your vehicle's serpentine belt, and as it spins, it pressurizes the system's refrigerant. It's this change in pressure that cools the air coming into your cabin. The best way to keep your compressor from failing is to have your A/C system serviced once a year.

If your compressor needs replacement, most responsible shops will recommend swapping out a number of periphery components at the same time.

Why? The easy answer is working on an air conditioning system is about as fun as sticking your hand in a blender. Twice.

To avoid draining your refrigerant, removing your compressor, installing a new unit and refilling the system with new cool stuff — only to have you come back in a week and say it's still not cold enough — it makes sense to replace the necessary components.

Bernard’s Garage

2036 SE Washington St., Milwaukie



Brought to you by Mike Nielsen of Snap Fitness - FITNESS INSIDER -

SNAP FITNESS - Mike NielsenAs the inspirational saying goes, “Live less out of habit and more out of intent.”

While it’s true that starting a fitness routine can be difficult, I offer the following tips to get you in the gym door and on the road to good health.

Assessment — New SNAP Fitness clients receive a free jump-start session, including consultation with a trainer. The assessment determines the client’s baseline, helps us guide their first steps, and is an opportunity to discuss adding personal training.

Cardio — The national recommendation for exercise for all ages and fitness levels is to get to the gym at least three days per week, and to do a minimum of 30 minutes of cardio per visit. Working out with a friend will make it more fun, help you feel more accountable, help you stay at the gym for more months and achieve a higher level of success.

Strength training is key to replacing fat with muscle, becoming leaner, stronger and improving balance. Do two to three sessions of strength training per week.

Nutritional guidelines — Instead of eating three large meals per day, eat five to six small meals. This will fuel your energy throughout the day and avoid post-meal sluggishness. Also drink 96 ounces of water daily.

Online help — SNAP has a complete online nutritional program and training center. Free with membership, it provides a personalized workout plan, sample menus and a complete library of instruction videos.

Snap Fitness

Milwaukie: 4200 SE King Rd.



Oregon City: 19703 S. Hwy. 213, Ste. 170



Brought to you by Mike Nielsen - Snap Fitness - Fitness INSIDER

Mike Nielsen, Snap FitnessStrength training is an essential part of an exercise program, even for someone who hasn’t been active in a while.

Lifting weights, using weight machines and doing core work increases muscle mass and bone density.

As we age, our muscles deteriorate (called sarcopenia) and bone density decreases.

Research shows that seniors are more susceptible to bone breakage that younger adults. As people age, their metabolism slows down. We are seeing more and more seniors joining gyms.

If we take the average adult between the ages of 40 and 50 and do basic strength-training three to four times per week for 90 days, the outcome can be life-changing.

Here’s a myth-buster: Muscle does NOT weigh more than fat! A pound is a pound. 

Muscle is, however, more dense than body fat and takes up less area than fat. If you were to start an exercise program complete with strength training, you would increase your lean body mass and decrease body fat.

The body takes up less space and metabolism speeds up, resulting in a higher BMR (base metabolic rate, the amount of daily caloric intake needed to maintain LBM and weight.) This reverses sarcopenia and increases bone density.   

Not everyone walks into a gym and knows exactly what to do. Snap gives new members an opportunity to meet with a Certified Personal Trainer, who assesses their body and their goals. 

Let’s get started.

Snap Fitness

Milwaukie: 4200 SE King Rd.



Oregon City: 19703 S. Hwy. 213, Ste. 170



Brought to you by John Sciarra, Bernard's Garage - AUTO MAINTENANCE INSIDER

John Sciarra, Bernard's GarageRegular maintenance on your car is, quite simply, a good investment.

For example, when you bring your car in for a timing belt — typically needed at 90,000 to 100,000 miles— it costs in the range of $400 to $500. But if it breaks, it might be $1,800 to $2,000.

At our shop, when we do it, we do it right. With the timing belt, we also replace the timing belt tensioner, idler pulleys, camshaft seals, water pump and coolant.

Mileage interval maintenance, which is only done by shops, should be done at 30,000, 60,000 and 90,000 miles.

The ideal scenario is to get the car into the shop about three times per year for inspections, which will find things like rodent damage, which is more common than you might think. It’s mainly squirrels in this area.

An inspection will also uncover leaking coolant or oil, as well as plugged-up air filters. Once a year, you should get a brake inspection.

We do complete automotive repair, including pre-purchase inspections for $150. That’s a comprehensive inspection, which can detect unforeseen problems and save you from buying a compromised vehicle.

Our average cost for an oil change is $38; $58 for a brake inspection.

It’s a small investment. We do it properly and can save you a lot of trouble and expense down the road.

Bernard’s Garage

2036 SE Washington St., Milwaukie



Mike Nielsen - Snap Fitness - Fitness INSIDER

SNAP FITNESS - Mike Nielsen“We are a friendly, success-oriented fitness center,” says Mike Nielsen, vice president and co-owner of Snap Fitness locations in Oregon City, Milwaukie and Canby. “We’re like the ‘Cheers’ of the gym world, where everybody knows your name.”

Nielsen has been a certified fitness coach for 13 years and has been with Snap for eight years. He says being a fitness coach is all about helping individuals achieve the best version of themselves.

“It’s not just something that’s done at the gym, but it’s a lifestyle change,” he said of Snap. “We focus on not only the physical but also the mental and emotional aspects of everyday life, to make sure we are able to achieve long-term success.”

He says Snap gyms have a family feel and a personal touch.

The gyms are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with monitored access for safety. Snap has more than 1,500 locations nationwide.

The fitness centers offer cardio, personal training, weight-loss programs, a health center, strength training and Olympic lifting. An online web page for members offers nutrition counseling and an online training center.

“Our members are our greatest assets,” Nielsen added. “We do all we can to make sure they have not only the best facility and equipment, but a wonderful experience.”

Snap Fitness


Milwaukie: 4200 SE King Rd.


Oregon City: 19703 S. Hwy. 213, Ste. 170


Canby: 1109 SW 1st Ave.


Brought to you by John Sciarra - Bernard's Garage - AUTOMOTIVE INSIDER -

BERNARD'S GARAGE - John SciarraAfter nearly 100 years of providing excellent full-service automotive repair and maintenance, Bernard’s Garage is a classic Milwaukie institution trusted by generations of customers.

Founded in 1925, old timers and area residents still remember Joe Bernard Sr., who would design and build custom car parts when his customers’ vehicles needed it. Joe Bernard Jr., a former Milwaukie mayor, helped modernize Bernard’s and continued his father’s tradition of excellent customer service.

The current owner, Jim Bernard, another Milwaukie mayor and current Clackamas County commissioner, has computerized Bernard’s—turning his father’s mechanics into today’s technicians.

Besides providing free pickup and delivery, Bernard’s offers DEQ repair and adjustments, check-engine light diagnosis, manufacturer-scheduled maintenance, brakes, steering and suspension repair, timing belt tune-ups, radiator and water pump work, as well as engine, transmission and air conditioning service.

“We are straight shooters and will let you know what the problem is and what the cost is upfront,” Operations Manager John Sciarra says.

Sciarra, an 18 year veteran of Bernard’s, has attained numerous specialty vehicle class certifications. With 26 years in the industry overall, Sciarra is our INSIDER for automotive excellence.

Bernard’s Garage is a 17-year-long supporter of the Milwaukie Farmers Market, a Milwaukie First Friday participant and frequently donates to the Annie Ross House, Milwaukie Senior Center and other local schools and events.

A member of the Clackamas County Chamber of Commerce since 1955, Bernard’s has been named Business of the Year twice since 2000, and has received the BRAG award from the county for practicing responsible recycling and waste management.

Bernard's Garage 

2036 SE Washington St, Milwaukie, OR.

(503) 659-7722


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Cities, groups honor veterans with ceremonies, events


(Image is Clickable Link) by: PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP FILE PHOTO - Cities around the region will host several Veterans Day events and ceremonies on Monday, Nov. 11.Portland-area civic and military organizations are hosting several Veterans Day events Monday to mark the somber occasion.

In Salem, the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs will again host a memorial ceremony beginning at 2 p.m. on the department's grounds in Salem, 700 Summer St. N.E. The public ceremony will honor three fallen Oregon service members who died recently while serving in Afghanistan and the Red Sea. The names of more than 140 other Oregon men and women that are inscribed on the Afghan-Iraqi Freedom Memorial also will be read during the ceremony.

Veterans Day was once called Armistice Day. In 1918, at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the guns fell silent in Europe and the armistice was signed, signaling the end of “the war to end all wars.” A year later, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed the day as Armistice Day. Since 1954, Nov. 11 has officially been set aside as Veterans Day.

Other special events, parades and gatherings to honor America's military veterans are planned in communities throughout Oregon. A statewide list of the events is at www.oregondva.com/blog/2013/10/23/2013-oregon-veterans-day-events.

Here is a list of local events:

• Beaverton

Nov. 11, 11 a.m. — A ceremony, hosted by American Legion Post 124, with POW/MIA Remembrance ceremony at Bethel Congregational Church, Seventh and Watson Street. Guest speaker: Larry Hill, state American Legion vice commander. Music: Soloist, Soprano Anna Kazakova and Southridge High School Choir. Flags will be displayed around Veterans Memorial Park.

• Corbett

Nov. 11, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. — American Legion Post 108 and the Kiwanis Club will host a program at the Corbett School. Refreshments will be served.

• Estacada

Nov. 11, 7 to 11 a.m. — A breakfast hosted by American Legion Post 74 is served at the Odd Fellows Hall, 267 SW 2nd Ave. Cost: $5.

• Forest Grove

Nov. 10, 12:30 p.m. — American Legion Post 2 and Elks Lodge Post 2440 will host ceremonies at the Elks Lodge, 2810 Pacific Ave. Guest speaker: WWII veteran and Medal of Honor candidate, Lt. Col (ret.) Leonard DeWitt. Free lunch for veterans, their families, active military, National Guard and Reservists. Entertainment will follow.

• Gresham

Nov. 11, 1 p.m. — Memorial service hosted by VFW Post 180 at Powell Boulevard and Roberts Street.

• Hillsboro

Nov 11, 11 a.m. — A ceremony at the Veteran’s Gateway, Washington County Fairgrounds will pay special recognition to the 60-year anniversary of the Korean War Armistice. Guest speakers: Andy Duyck, Washington Co. Board Chair; local Korean War veterans. Color Guard: VFW and American Legion. Light refreshments will be provided afterward.

• Milwaukie

Nov. 11, 1 to 5 p.m. — Veterans and their families are invited to an Open House at American Legion Post 180, 2146 S.E. Monroe St. Hot dogs and chili will be served. Live patriotic music at 3 p.m. provided by Post 180’s musicians. Donations accepted.

• Newberg

Nov. 10 and 11 — Flag folding ceremonies will be held at local assisted living facilities both days by Lester C. Rees American Legion Post 57.

• Oregon City

Nov. 11, noon to 6 p.m. — VFW Three Rivers Post 1324, 104 Tumwater, will have Post tours and displays of military memorabilia from WWII through the present. Coffee and refreshments will be served.

• Portland

Nov. 9, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Nov. 10, noon to 5 p.m. — All veterans, active duty military, retirees and their families will be admitted free to the Oregon History Museum at the Oregon Historical Society, 1200 S.W. Park Ave. A valid military ID, a Veterans Identification Card, a Common Access Card (CAC), DD Forms 1173 or 1173-1 are required for admission.

Nov. 9, 9 to 11 a.m. — City Bible Church, 9200 N.E. Fremont St., will host a free Veterans Day breakfast for all veterans, First Responders, their family and friends and the public.

Nov. 11, 9:45 a.m. — The 39th Annual Ross Hollywood Chapel Veterans Day Parade runs from Northeast 40th Avenue and Tillamook Street, ending at 48th Avenue and Sandy Boulevard. A ceremony is planned at 10:30 a.m. Grand Marshals: USO Northwest Staff. All proceeds from the first Hollywood Veterans Mile run will benefit USO Northwest. After the parade the public is invited to a free WWII style USO show at the Hollywood Theater on Northeast Sandy Boulevard.

1 p.m. — University of Portland Reserve Officer Training Corps will host a ceremony at the Praying Hands Memorial on campus, 5000 N. Willamette Blvd.

Nov. 11, all day — The Oregon Zoo will mark Veterans Day by offering free admission for military veterans and active military personnel, as well as family members who accompany them to the zoo. Families of deployed military personnel also will be given free admission.

To receive free admission, visitors must show a military or veteran organization ID, discharge papers or other official military identification; families of deployed military personnel must show an active duty ID. The Zoo Store is also offering a 10 percent discount for veterans, active military personnel and their families, with proper identification.

• Prineville

Nov. 11, 11 a.m. — The annual parade begins on Main Street and Fourth Avenue and ends at Ochoco Park where a ceremony will honor veterans. Afterwards American Legion Post 29 is hosting a free spaghetti lunch open to the public at the Veterans Club, 405 N. Main St.

• Sandy

Nov. 11, 11 a.m. — Ceremonial tribute with patriotic music hosted by VFW Post 4273 and Auxiliary at the Sandy Town Square on Pioneer Boulevard. Guest speakers, Color Guard, and Taps will be played. At noon, a community potluck is planned at VFW Post 4273, 38452 Proctor Blvd.

• Sherwood

Nov. 11, 11 a.m. — Sherwood High School, 16956 S.W. Meinecke Road, is hosting a ceremony to honor all veterans. Enjoy patriotic music and hear inspirational speakers including Mayor Bill Middleton.

• Tigard

Nov. 11, noon — Veterans and guest are invited to enjoy Hobo Stew at American Legion Post 158, 8635 S.W. Scoffins St. Donations will be accepted.

• Wilsonville

Nov. 11 – 10:30 a.m. – Salute to the U.S. Flag and America’s veterans during a ceremony at the Oregon Korean War Memorial, 29600 Town Center Park. Korean Consul General Young Wan Song will present Ambassador for Peace certificates and medals to U.S. Korean War veterans.

• Woodburn

Nov. 11, 10:30 a.m. — Ceremony at Belle Passi Cemetery Mausoleum, Belle Passi Road, hosted by American Legion, Post 46.

• Wood Village

Nov. 9, 8 to 11 a.m. — Free pancake breakfast for veterans at the Wood Village Baptist Church, 23601 W. Arata Road, hosted by Eagles Aerie No. 4515. Suggested donation: $5 for non-veterans. Handmade quilt with names of Oregon’s Fallen from OIF-OEF on display. Guest speakers: U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, Multnomah County Commissioner Diane McKeel, FOE Grand Tribunal Justice and DAV Rick Franklin.