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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 get the best of their rivals


La Salle boys and girls get it done

La Salle Prep thinclads took care of business in last week’s Tri-Valley Conference track and field meet with cross-town rival Gladstone.by: JON HOUSE - La Salle senior Ben Hortaleza (center) heads for a Class 5A states best clocking of 14.95 in the high hurdles during last weeks dual meet with Gladstone.

The Falcons guys got the best of their Gladstone counterparts, winning 80-1/2 to 64-1/2, while La Salle girls prevailed 77-67.

La Salle boys were dominant in the distances and in the field events.

The Falcon guys won all three distance races and they swept the 3,000-meter run. They won every field event except the triple jump and they swept the shot put and discus.

And La Salle guys were not without some outstanding marks.

La Salle senior Ben Hortaleza pushed himself to a 14.95 clocking in the 110-meter high hurdles, a state’s best for Class 4A by half a second.

La Salle senior Jacob Meek won the shot put in a TVC-best of 48-11, leading a Falcon sweep of that event. Meek also launched the discus 137-3, heading up a La Salle sweep of that event.

Meek has the state’s second-best Class 4A throw in the javelin this season, at 185, but he did not compete in that event in the meet with Gladstone.

La Salle junior Justin Heller got the best of Gladstone senior Andrew Conway in the pole vault, winning that event by a foot with a TVC-best 13-0. The event featured five of the top pole vaulters in the TVC, according to Gladstone coach Greg Hess.

La Salle sophomore Michael Loeffler made some waves in the high jump, clearing 6-3 for an easy victory. He is among only four Class 4A athletes who have cleared that height the spring.

Other winners for La Salle guys were senior Logan Veasy in the 800 (2:09.42), senior Will Thompson in the 1,500 (4:20.22), junior Jason Rae in the 3,000 (9:51.39), senior George Lilly in the javelin (154-9) and Hortaleza in the long jump (17-11).

Gladstone junior Sean Williams tossed the spear a 10-foot PR of 140-10 in finishing second to Lilly in the javelin.

Gladstone was tough in the sprints. Gladiator junior Rowan Richter won the 400-meter dash (55.40) and led a Gladiator sweep of the 200 (24.22), and Gladiator junior Eric Prom (11.47) led a Gladstone sweep of the 100.

Gladstone junior Mac McCaslin set the pace in the intermediate hurdles (45.94) and Gladstone junior E.J. Penn (40-0-3/4) had the best mark of the day in the triple jump.

Gladstone boys also prevailed in both relay races, winning the 4x100 in 44.50, and the 4x400 in 3:40.00.

La Salle girls rallied around their strength on the track to get by their Gladstone counterparts.

The Falcons won both relays and every individual track event except the 100, 200 and 3000.

La Salle sophomore Carly Veasy (5:40.20) led a Falcon sweep of the 1,500. La Salle sophomore Talya Holenstein (1:06.43) won the 400-meter dash and La Salle junior Kat Christoferson (2:33.56) set the pace in the 800.

La Salle senior Courtney Crain was impressive in the hurdles, winning the high hurdles in 17.32 and the low hurdles in 49.69. Her mark in the highs is the second-best mark by a TVC girl in the event this spring.

La Salle junior Claire Primack picked up a big win in the long jump, where she soared 16-6, beating out Gladstone senior by: JON HOUSE - Senior Kelsey Hathaway was a bright spot for Gladstone in last weeks dual loss to La Salle. Pictured above, Hathaway (center) edges La Salle sprinters Talya Holenstein (left) and Claire Primack for first place in the 200-meter dash. Hathaway also won the 100 in a career-best time of 12.91 and the triple jump, at 32-1-1/4. Primack got the best of Hathaway in the long jump, winning by three fourths of an inch.Kelsey Hathaway by just three fourths of an inch.

Hathaway had a big meet for Gladstone, winning the 100 in a career best time of 12.91, the 200 in a season’s best of 27.07, and the triple jump with an effort of 32-1-1/4. Her marks in the sprints ranked her in the top three in the TVC.

Junior Chelsea Sound was a double winner for Gladstone girls, winning the shot put with an effort of 34-11-1/2 and the discus with a toss of 108-5. Her throw in the shot put was a personal best by over two feet and the mark ranks her second in the TVC.

Gladstone had another double winner in junior Hannah Kent — 107-10 in the javelin and 4-6 in the high jump.

Gladstone senior Elena Otteson cleared a personal best 9-7 for first place in the pole vault, the second-best mark in the TVC and the seventh best mark in the state in Class 4A this spring.

La Salle concludes the TVC regular season this afternoon, when the Falcons travel to Molalla for a meet with North Marion and Molalla. Gladstone wraps up its dual season this afternoon, hosting Estacada.

The Tri-Valley Conference district meet is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, May 16-17, at North Marion.