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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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Falcons steal a w from rivals


Theres controversy at the end, but Johnsons last second free throws lift La Salle to a 40-39 victory

The fourth-ranked La Salle Falcons turned up the heat in the Brick Oven at crunch time and rallied to a 40-39 victory in a hotly contested boys basketball game with cross-town rival Gladstone on Feb. 5.

After a seesaw third quarter, Gladstone went up late in the period and maintained the lead until inside the final second of play, when La Salle senior guard Ian Johnson made two pressure-packed free throws to salvage the narrow victory.

The Gladiators had 15 turnovers in the game, five of them in the final 2:20 of play.

Gladstone senior guard Michael Stoutt scored Gladstone’s final points of the game with 1:38 remaining when he made two free throws to make it 39-33 Gladstone.

Johnson stuck a 3-pointer from the top of the key with just under a minute remaining to trim Gladstone’s lead to 39-36.

Sean Hays rebounded a missed Gladiator free throw with 40 seconds remaining.

With 16 seconds left, Hays rebounded a missed 3 by a teammate at La Salle’s end of the floor. Hays was fouled and his two free throws made it a one-point game, at 39-38.

After turnovers by each team, Gladstone inbounded the ball and the Falcons fouled Gladstone senior Jacob Kelly.

Kelly, feeling pressure from the boisterous crowd, missed both charity tosses.

Hays rebounded the second miss, gaining possession for La Salle.

McGraw attempted a trey from the corner and had the shot blocked out of bounds by Kelly.

Johnson put up a 5-footer and had his shot blocked out of bounds by Gladstone junior forward Ryun Gibson with just 1.1 ticks left on the clock.

The officials ruled that the blocked shot went off a La Salle player and they awarded the ball to Gladstone.

The Gladiators’ inbound pass with 1.1 seconds remaining was tipped by a La Salle player as it left the inbounder’s hands.

A melee ensued as players from both teams scrapped for the loose ball at halfcourt. A foul was called on Gladstone’s Handsome Smith, sending Johnson to the free throw line, where he swished the game-winners.

“That has to go down as the toughest loss I’ve ever experienced as a coach,” said Gladstone coach Ted Yates. “We won that game, except for a perfect storm. I was calling for a timeout [with 1.1 seconds left] and both officials were looking the other way and they wouldn’t give it to me. They started the clock when it was touched in the melee at half-court, instead of when it was first touched on the inbounds. Time should have been out when they called the foul. And there shouldn’t have been a foul called anyway. Both players were going for the ball.”

Had he been given the timeout, Yates says he would have instructed his player inbounding the ball to throw the ball towards the Gladiators’ key at the other end of the floor, “and don’t worry about catching it. If they get the ball and want to attempt a shot from there, let them have it.”

Hays (12 points) and Jacob McGraw (10 points) paced La Salle in scoring.

Except for Hays, who was 5-of-7 from the field, the Falcons had an off-night of shooting, making only 17-of-44 shots from the floor, for a lukewarm .386 shooting percentage.

Gladstone was 17-of-36 (.472) from the floor, but McGraw (8 rebounds), Hays (6 rebounds) and Keeston Smith (6 rebounds) led La Salle to a 31-18 advantage on the backboards. And Hays’ rebounds were pivotal, many of them coming inside the final minute of play.

Stoutt tallied a game-high 19 points to lead the Gladiators. But he was the only Gladstone player scoring in double figures.

“I really respect Gladstone,” said La Salle coach Jared Curtiss. “I think they are a team capable of getting to [the state tournament at] Gill Coliseum....

“The coaches really had them prepared for us. They seemed to have an answer for everything we did. It was a shame that there had to be a loser in that game.”

La Salle and Gladstone both won on Friday, the Falcons handling North Marion 76-49, while the Gladiators won ugly, 46-36 in double overtime in a home game with Estacada.

McGraw was huge for the Falcons at North Marion, scoring 23 points and hauling down a career-high 15 rebounds. McGraw was 6-of-10 from the field; he hit two 3-pointers and he was 9-of-11 at the free throw line.

“McGraw’s rebounding is something we talked about,” Curtiss said. “He’s not just a scorer like some guys, he has a skill set and athleticism that separates him from most guards in the state. He went out and grabbed 15 rebounds. When he does that, we are a really good team.”

La Salle (19-2, 6-1) entered play this week ranked fourth in the state, with league games remaining with Madras (13-8, 4-3), Estacada (4-13, 0-7) and Molalla (14-6, 6-1). The Falcons host Estacada this Friday, before finishing up the regular season next Tuesday at Molalla.

“We won ugly,” Yates said of his Gladiators’ double overtime win over the upstart Rangers. “The emotional loss at La Salle took its toll. We were fighting mental things. La Salle had to be our best game of the year and everything we did good at La Salle, we did bad against Estacada. We didn’t play with any energy or enthusiasm until the two overtimes. But I’ve got to hand it to the kids. They sucked it up and won against a team that’s on the rise.”

Defense was pivotal in the double overtime win. The Gladiators forced 21 turnovers, while committing just 10 turnovers of their own.

Stoutt and Smith headed up the defensive effort, with seven steals between them.

Ryun Gibson and Trevor Browning headed up the Gladiators’ offense, scoring 14 and 11 points respectively.

Yates praised Trevor Browning: “Trevor was the only guy who, in my mind, played a solid game from start to finish. We don’t win that game without Trevor.”

Browning was a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line in the two overtimes, scoring Gladstone’s only points in the first extra period.

Smith was 4-for-4 from the charity stripe in the second overtime, when the Gladiators outscored the Rangers 13-3. Stoutt hit a pivotal 3-pointer, and Gibson made three free throws.

Gladstone (11-7, 4-3) entered play this week ranked 13th in the state and trailing La Salle (6-1) and 11th-ranked Molalla (6-1) in the TVC standings with three league games remaining.

Gladstone was to play Molalla on Tuesday. The Gladiators play 12th-ranked Madras on the road this Friday and they finish up the regular season next Tuesday, hosting North Marion (6-15, 1-6).