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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 aim to wear down their opponents


New coach has 22 starters and he introduces a no-huddle offense

La Salle Prep gridmen aim to prove their doubters wrong as they move up from the Class 4A Tri-Valley Conference to the Class 5A Northwest Oregon Conference.

Photo Credit: JOHN DENNY - La Salle Prep coach Aaron Hazel works on technique with senior leaders (left to right) Jack Hogan, Greg Dettmer and Joe Kohnstamm.Few people outside of La Salle expect much from the Falcons in football this fall. That’s because the Falcons struggled last year, going 1-4 in the Class 4A Tri-Valley Conference (2-7 overall), and because this year their school has the smallest enrollment of any school in the 5A classification.

But the Falcons have a new coach in alumnus Aaron Hazel (1999). The players say they are excited about what Hazel brings to the program; La Salle has more experienced players in its varsity lineup than it had last year; and the players and coaching staff believe that La Salle has a shot at finishing in the top half of the Northwest Oregon Conference and perhaps advancing to postseason play.

“We’re not going to be the biggest team out there,” said Hazel. “But with our no-huddle offense and 22 starters, we’re going to make up for our lack of size with the pace of play and 11 fresh bodies. We’ll wear people down.”

Hazel played football at La Salle under former head coach Ray Baker, who built successful teams by having 22 different starters.

“I’m excited about the change in culture,” said La Salle senior Greg Dettmer. “We’ve got a team motto — you versus yesterday. Every day we try to do better than we did the day before.”

“My goal is to get to the playoffs,” said Hazel. “If we get better every single day and do that consistently, and if we’re a better team from each Friday night to the next Friday night, and we stay healthy, I believe we can make the playoffs.”

The top three teams from the nine-team NWOC will advance to the Class 5A state playoffs this year, along with a possible fourth team as a wildcard entry. The league this year includes teams from Hillsboro, Liberty, Parkrose, St. Helens, Sandy, Wilsonville, Milwaukie, Putnam and La Salle.

“I’m excited about our new no-huddle offense,” said senior Jack Hogan. “I think it will help us against the bigger teams that we’re going to face in 5A.”

“I’m excited about the new coaching staff and what they’ve brought to the program,” said senior Joe Kohnstamm. “With our [lack of] size and our speed, I think it’s a perfect fit for us.”

Kohnstamm added, “Being the smallest school in 5A, we’re going to play with a chip on our shoulders. But we have depth, with 22 different starters, and that should play to our advantage.

“We want to prove all those doubters who think we’re not going to be very good wrong. Focus on getting better, day by day and game to game.”

Dettmer said he believes that senior leadership will be a big plus for the Falcons. He said the Falcons have 15 seniors out this fall, where they had only seven seniors on the team last year.

“And we’ve had a lot of younger guys come out who didn’t play last year,” said Dettmer. “Good athletes, like Jalontae Walker and Ben Wright. They’re going to help out a lot.”

Asked about team strengths, Hazel was quick to say, “Our defensive line. They’re very, very tough. Very athletic and very quick. And they make great reads.”

Hazel listed 12 athletes among his top players on defense: defensive linemen Dettmer (6-2, 190), Kohnstamm (5-9, 220) and junior Brendan Quinn (6-1, 210); linebackers senior Mike Bianca (6-1, 205) and juniors Jacob Lyver (6-2, 180), Josh Kurtin (5-10, 170) and Wright (5-10, 175); defensive backs senior Keenan Hall (6-3, 170) and juniors Joe Boyd (6-2, 175) and Walker (6-1, 210); and cornerbacks senior Mike Duarte (5-11, 165) and junior Charlie Sliney (5-9, 160).

Kohnstamm, Quinn, Lyver, Bianca, Duarte and Sliney all saw starting action on defense last year, while Dettmer was a starter on offense.

Quinn was a second-team all-conference defensive lineman in the Tri-Valley Conference as a sophomore.

Hazel listed his top prospects on offense: seniors Alex Sherrill (6-3, 190) and Mike Duarte at quarterback, along with junior Chris Larsen (5-10, 190); senior Nash Lisac (5-9, 165) at running back; seniors Mike Duarte and Keaton Kryger (5-8, 165) and sophomores Matt Duarte (5-8, 155) and Parker Cardwell (6-0, 175) at wide receiver; senior Jacob Casey (5-11, 215) at tight end; and seniors Hogan (5-10, 225), Austin Bosworth (6-1, 205) and Brendon Falk (6-4, 205) and juniors Quentin Collier (6-2, 195) and Aaron Johnson (6-2, 245) in the offensive line. Eight of the defensive players started last year.

Falk a year ago made first-team all-league as an offensive lineman; Mike Duarte received honorable mention for his play at quarterback.

Hazel says that, barring injuries, he anticipates that Mike Duarte is the only player who will see significant minutes on both sides of the football this season.

“I like this group,” said Hazel. “The majority of kids are doing a good job of flying around, and we’re having some leaders evolve, busting their tails every day. I couldn’t ask for those kids to work harder.”

Hazel has 11 assistants on his coaching staff, including varsity assistants Troy Lyver (linebackers), Austin Rosen (running backs), Joe Salvador (defensive coordinator), Keith Mecklem (offensive line), Chris George (receivers), Nick Phillips (defensive line) and Ian Zarosinksi (defensive backs).

Lyver and Rosen were members of the staff last year. George, a 1997 graduate of La Salle, returns to help out in football after a four-year absence; Phillips is a 2002 graduate of La Salle.

Salvador was an assistant at Madison last fall; Mecklem was an assistant at Gladstone. Zarosinski played for Hazel at Skyview High School and he is close to graduating at Linfield.

Coaching La Salle freshmen are: Jim Hellyer, Jerome Ka’Ahanui, Shawn Kelly and Mike Weaber. Hellyer and Ka’Ahanui coached at La Salle last year. Kelly, a 2006 graduate of La Salle, was on the coaching staff with Hazel at Skyview last season.

La Salle begins NWOC play this Friday, hosting Milwaukie.

Looking forward to the league season, Hogan said he expects Wilsonville and Parkrose to field strong teams.

He said of Milwaukie, “They’ll probably be our biggest rival, because they’re so close to us.”

Hazel comes to La Salle after coaching in a tremendously successful program at Vancouver’s Skyview High School, where he served as quarterback and linebacker coach, and, the past two seasons, as offensive coordinator.

“They made the playoffs the last nine years,” said Hazel. “At one point we won four league titles in a row and, in 2011, we lost in the [state championship] final.”

Skyview competes at the 4A level, the highest competitive level in Washington high school athletics.