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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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Woman assaulted at rest stop near Wilsonville


33-year-old Salem woman and child attacked at Baldock Rest Area

by: OREGON STATE POLICE - A 33-year-old Salem woman was attacked Friday at the Baldock Rest Area near Wilsonville. Her child was unharmed.A 33-year-old Salem woman was allegedly assaulted at the rest area just south of Wilsonville. First reported as an attempted abduction Friday afternoon, police are now considering the event as an assault.

On Aug. 16, at approximately 5 p.m., a report was received regarding a man beating a woman with a child at the southbound Interstate 5 Baldock Rest Area. Officers from Oregon State Police, Clackamas County Sheriff's Office, Wilsonville Police Department and Canby Police Department responded to the rest area. Entrance and exit ramps were blocked as officers, assisted by a K-9 unit on the ground and a Clackamas County airplane, searched the area where the suspect reportedly fled west. 

The 33-year old Salem woman was transported by ambulance to a local hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Her name, the exact nature of her injuries and the name of the hospital are not released at this time. She was expected to remain hospitalized at least overnight. 

The woman told an OSP detective that she stopped in Wilsonville on personal business and then went to the rest area for a brief stop. She said the front lot was busy so she pulled her vehicle into the rear parking area where she and her daughter got out and went for a brief walk. As they entered the grassy, treed area she was suddenly struck from behind and knocked to the ground. She covered her daughter as the suspect struck her several times with an unknown hard object and then tried to strangle her, according to police.

For an unknown reason, the suspect stopped the assault and ran west. The victim got a brief look as the suspect ran away and described him as a white male, unknown age, approximately 5 feet 10 inches and medium build. He was wearing faded, dirty dark pants and an unknown color short-sleeve shirt. His hair from the back looked brown in color, cut above the collar. 

The child was not hurt. A family member came and transported her from the scene. 

Though the incident was first reported as an attempted child abduction, police have found no evidence to confirm it. OSP is continuing the investigation and search for the suspect in the alleged assault Friday afternoon. 

Oregon Travel Experience (OTE) rest area operations personnel were asked by law enforcement to help at the rest area's crime staging area following the incident. Staff followed established protocol and provided assistance as requested.

OTE Director of Rest Area Operations Jason Nash was present during the search for the perpetrator. 

"Baldock is a large, nearly 55-acre parcel of heavily wooded grounds, similar to a small state park," Nash said. "It takes a lot of boots on the ground to search and secure.

"More than 2 million travelers have used Baldock rest area in the last seven months, including 406,000 in the month of July. Nash said it is the most heavily used rest area on I-5.by:  OREGON STATE POLICE - Oregon State Police are seeking a man who allegedly attacked a 33-year-old Salem woman at the Baldock Rest Area.

"A busy rest area like Baldock is almost like a small city," Nash said. "With that many people passing through one area, there are bound to be a few folks who engage in less than law-abiding activity."

Nash said OTE and OSP work together to diminish criminal activity within OTE's rest areas. OSP Lt. Gregg Hastings noted that crime in the Baldock rest area has dipped significantly since OTE has initiated their onsite management. 

Oregon Travel Experience's CEO Kyle Walker asked travelers to remain vigilant.

"OTE is always mindful and concerned about the safety of the motoring public and rest area users," said Walker. "As a woman who travels frequently myself, this incident is a reminder that crime can occur anywhere, at any time. I would urge travelers to exercise good judgment when leaving their vehicles and using large wooded areas such as Baldock."

"The back lot where the victim parked is more remote than the parking area near the highway," said Nash. "Because of the high traffic count at this rest stop, it can be difficult to find space at the more visible front lot."

Access to the rest area was closed about 90 minutes. ODOT and Oregon Travel Experience personnel were on scene to help as needed.

Anyone at the rest area who may have witnessed this crime but didn't speak to OSP is asked to call the OSP Northern Command Center at 800-452-7888 (in Oregon) or 503-731-3030. 

"We are always looking for ways to improve safety and convenience for our travelers," said Nash, "and are extremely grateful that the two victims involved in this incident will recover and are now safe with family. I am confident that the person responsible for the assault will be apprehended."

Oregon Travel Experience offers safety tips

- Stop, look and listen: Be aware of your immediate surroundings and any unknown persons.

- Park in an area that is well lighted and where other people are around.

- Never leave valuables in your car such as cellphones and purses.

- Lock your vehicle when you leave it unattended.

- Before you exit the restrooms, check to make sure you have all your belongings.

- Avoid walking in unlighted or isolated areas.

- If you are followed or threatened, call for help. (Shout or scream for help, and call 911.)

- Avoid carrying large sums of cash.

- Check your surroundings before exiting your vehicle, and if suspicious activity is noted, remain in your car with the doors locked. Notify law enforcement if possible from your cellphone.

- Do not stand close to strangers asking for directions.