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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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Foundation walk puts cancer fighters on Gladstone streets


Although Sherie Hildreth died in 2009, her legacy lives on in the upcoming Sherie Hildreth Ovarian Cancer Foundation’s Ninth Annual Empowerment Day Walk and Run set for Saturday, Aug. 3.

Hildreth, a longtime teacher at Kraxberger Elementary School in Gladstone, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in October 2004, and the first empowerment event took place in August 2005.

by: PHOTO BY DICK TRTEK - Runners and walkers get off to a rousing start at they head out on last year's SHOC Foundation Empowerment Walk/Run in Gladstone.“When Sherie started this foundation and created the event with friends, I was all in because she asked me for my help, and who could refuse the one you love? When Sherie passed in 2009, she requested that we keep the foundation and event going to make a difference for those women still struggling with their diagnosis, along with those yet to be,” said Bruce Hildreth, Sherie’s husband and president of the SHOC Foundation.

Funding research

The walk/run is the SHOC Foundation’s largest fundraising event of the year, he said. The proceeds from this event and others provide funding for the Gynecologic Oncology lab at Oregon Health & Science University’s Knight Cancer Institute, where Dr. Tanja Pejovic does ovarian cancer research, looking for an early detection marker for this deadly disease.  

“We have also been able to fund the set-up of the Oregon Ovarian Cancer Registry and keep the process in motion, which gathers vital information from diagnosed women as well as other members of their family. This has been a boost to our research,” Hildreth said, noting, that the SHOC Foundation’s annual gift for 2013 will place the total to date at well over $500,000.

It is important for people to continue supporting the annual SHOC walk/run, because ovarian cancer is the fifth deadliest cancer among women, partly due to misinformation and lack of awareness about the disease, said Ashley Hildreth, Sherie and Bruce Hildreth’s daughter, and executive administrator for the foundation.

“This run is SHOC’s largest fundraiser. Not only does it bring in crucial dollars for research, but also the marketing of it allows us to make a splash in surrounding communities,” she said.

She added that the power of her mother’s legacy “compounds with every passing year. And it never ceases to amaze me how many people care enough about her story and SHOC’s purpose to stand with us in the fight.”

Lori Dayton, Sherie Hildreth’s sister and the marketing and sponsorship coordinator for the foundation, said the event made her sister so happy, both with the money raised and how the organization gets the word out to educate women. “To this day, I still meet at least two women a week who don’t know that there is really no test for ovarian cancer; that their annual exam is only telling them whether or not they have cervical cancer,” she said.

“I really feel like we are starting to make a difference and perhaps someday they will find a test for ovarian cancer.  Our goal is to save lives, whatever it takes.”

Wide support for cause

Bruce Hildreth said that event partners Gladstone’s Latus Motors Harley-Davidson, Compass Oncology, Toyota of Gladstone and PGE are the longest and most committed business entities helping with the walk/run, along with donations from other business partners and individuals who have written checks.

“But I cannot stress more my heartfelt thanks to the SHOC’s board members, advisers and the multitude of passionate volunteers who understand what we are trying to accomplish and therefore contributing their valuable time and effort for our cause,” he added.

“Every person who has touched our event in one way or another — be it a participant, volunteer, sponsor, private donor or contributor — is critical to the success of our event, and, ultimately, to the support we are able to provide to the gynecologic cancer community,” Ashley Hildreth said, adding that the organization is run 100 percent by volunteers.

“We try to make the SHOC Walk fun for the whole family, and we can’t thank our sponsors enough for everything they do. The more we don’t have to pay for, the more money we are able to raise and donate,” said Dayton, noting that she misses her sister, but knows she is watching over the organization.Geri Matin, Sherie Hildreth’s mother, said she misses her daughter terribly, but is so proud of how she handled her illness and of what she accomplished while going through her treatment.

She said she wants to thank “all the volunteers at the walk and throughout the year who continue to help us. Most of these were friends and fellow workers of Sherie’s. So important, of course, are our sponsors. We would be nowhere without them, and they are so generous and reliable year after year.”

Survivors’ stories

In addition to the walk/run itself, the event on Aug. 3 also is set up as a gathering spot for survivors of gynecological cancers, who are given teal T-shirts emblazoned with “Survivor,” and treated to a free breakfast.

During the opening ceremony this year, one of the speakers will be Phyllis Lang, who has survived both ovarian and breast cancer.

She was first diagnosed with ovarian cancer in October 1996, has experienced “bumps along the way,” but has had no recurrences of that cancer since 2006. She was, however, diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011, and said more people need to be aware that there are connections between the two.

Her grandmother had both breast cancer and ovarian cancer and her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was 30. Her doctor removed her ovaries at the time, and Lang is sure that is what allowed her mother to survive.

Lang first met Sherie Hildreth in 2006 at a health fair, and felt an “instant connection” with her, and has been attending the SHOC walk/run since 2007.

The theme of her speech on Aug. 3 will be about how she always wanted to do something in regards to ovarian cancer, but had no idea how to get started.

“Sherie had that ability to make people listen, follow and do. We became friends, and now I don’t just do the run for the cause, I do it for the Hildreth family and for everyone involved. They are just so dedicated.”

Acknowledging that there are a lot of cancer organizations out there that deserve support, Lang said she continues to back the SHOC Foundation, because “well over 90 percent of its funds go to funding research at the genetic level, and that is the way I feel will lead to a breakthrough. And especially because the organization is in the Portland area, I know all the money is staying in the community.”

She added, “I will wrap up my speech by saying that because of SHOC, I feel like I am contributing, and everyone at the event is contributing” to research on gynecological cancers.

Take a walk

What: The Sherie Hildreth Ovarian Cancer Foundation presents the Ninth Annual Empowerment Day Walk and Run

When: Saturday, Aug. 3; 6:30 a.m. registration, 7:30 a.m. opening ceremony, 8 a.m walk/run. The route moves along the Clackamas River and through Gladstone.

Where: Registration takes place at Latus Motors Harley-Davidson, 870 E. Berkeley, in Gladstone.

Cost: $35 adults, $15 youths, ages 6 to 12

Details: For more information and to register online, visit shocfoundation.org.