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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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La Salle Prep boys excel


The Falcons nearly double the score of the runner-up team from Molalla

by: JONATHAN HOUSE - La Salle senior Mark Holenstein earned district titles in the long jump and 200-meter dash. He was also part of a relay team that won district and qualified for state.MILWAUKIE — La Salle Prep’s boys track and field team ruled last week’s Tri-Valley Conference District Track and Field Meet, outscoring the runner-up team from Molalla 205-119.

It was the fourth straight district team title for the Falcon guys, who had winners in eight of the 17 events and qualified athletes for state in 12 events.

The Falcons were especially dominant on the track, where they won six events.

Seniors Mark Holenstein and Sterling Akles were tough in the short sprint races. Holenstein (23.02) and Akles (23.09) were the class of the field in the 200-meter dash, where they crossed the finish line a full second ahead of their nearest competition.

Akles (11.58) also set the pace in the 100-meter dash, where he beat out Gladstone speedsters Dakota Hollingsworth (11.86) and Eric Prom (11.91).

La Salle senior Colin Meisner (51.57) won handily in the 400-meter dash, crossing the finishing line half a second in front of Gladstone senior Tyler Bitter (52.16).

La Salle seniors Alex Soberanis (2:01.23) and Nick Lien (2:01.64) went one-two in the 800, where they got the best of Gladstone junior Trevor Browning (2:01.94).

The Falcons met their match in Molalla standout Pake Benthin in the 1,500 and 3,000, where he won with respective times of 4:12.81 and 9:01.60. But they still hauled in the points, with La Salle juniors Logan Veasy (4:17.05), Will Thompson (4:21.54) and Colton Passmore (4:28.21) going two-three-five in the 1,500; and Thompson (9:08.90), sophomore Jason Rae (9:19.70) and Veasy (9:34.85) going two-three-four in the 3,000.

La Salle junior Ben Hortaleza was tough in the hurdles, winning the high hurdles in 15.33 and placing third in the intermediates (42.01).

The Falcon 4x400-meter relay team of Akles, Meisner, Holenstein and Soberanis set the pace in that event, with a 3:26.22 clocking, finishing over four seconds ahead of the runner-up team from Molalla.

La Salle boys had two winners in the field events, Holenstein in the long jump (21-4) and junior George Lilly in the javelin (160-1).

Other state qualifiers included: junior Jacob Meek, second in the javelin (151-3); junior Cameron Mitchell, second in the pole vault (12-0); and freshman Michael Loeffler, second in the high jump (6-0).

La Salle boys scored points in every event except the triple jump and the 4x100-meter relay, where they were disqualified.

Heading into state, La Salle boys have several athletes who rank high: Holenstein is ranked third in the 200 and in the long jump; La Salle’s 4x400 relay team is ranked third; Lilly is ranked No. 4 in the javelin; Meisner is ranked fifth in the 400; Hortaleza is ranked fifth in the high hurdles; and Akles is ranked eighth in the 200.

La Salle girls

place fourth

La Salle Prep girls scored 120-1/2 points and placed fourth, just back of Estacada (125) in the TVC girls district meet. Gladstone (187-1/2) topped Molalla (151) for the title.

The Falcon girls were competitive, scoring points in every event.

La Salle girls qualified three individuals and a relay team for state.

Freshmen Talya Holenstein had a big district meet, winning the 400-meter dash (58.84), placing in the 200 (28.02), helping pace La Salle’s 4x400-meter relay team to second place and a berth at state, and running on a 4x100-meter relay team that placed third.

Holenstein’s time in the 400 ranks her fifth in the state in the event.

La Salle girls were also tough in the distances.

Senior Kelsey Cathcart (2:24.33) and sophomore Kate Christoferson (2:26.47) placed second and third in the 800; seniors Morgan Tholl (11:03.09) and Hannah Hildreth (11:31.85) placed second and fourth respectively in the 3,000 meters.

Amanda Byrne and Courtney Crain teamed up with Holenstein and Cathcart to get the job done in the 1,600-meter relay (4:05.39), where three teams qualified for state.