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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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OC thinclads bag their third straight district team title

Pioneer junior Justin Cornejo is a part of three school track records

Oregon City thinclads last Thursday and Friday turned what was expected to be a close meet into a runaway, as they cruised to their third straight district team title in Three Rivers League boys track and field.

The Pioneers tallied 151 team points, finishing well in front of the runner-up boys team from Lakeridge, which scored 131-1/2. Rounding out the scoring were: Lake Oswego (118-1/2), Canby (80), Clackamas (70-1/2), Grant (66) and West Linn (41-1/2).

'Of the three district championships, this one means the most, because coming in we projected a win by the fewest points,' said Oregon City coach Adam Thygeson. 'We thought it would be a very close meet. If everyone did what they were supposed to do, we thought we'd win by nine points; last year we projected to win by 30.

'The kids arose to the challenge and outperformed our projections. I couldn't be prouder.'

Thygeson added: 'What makes this win extra special was it was truly a team win. We had second kids that we projected to place seventh or eighth step up and place higher. Those second kids are the ones who made the difference.'

Thygeson said the biggest surprise came in the 100- and 200-meter sprints, where junior Ryan Cox, who was seeded eighth, placed fourth.

The Pioneers also had their share of the meet's top performers, winning seven events and finishing runner-up in three more.

'This [district meet championship] means a lot,' said Oregon City team co-captain Jarom Youngblood. 'Us seniors have been together four years now. We've been working really hard. We've graduated some really good athletes from past years, so this year it was up to us to lead the team and carry the team on our shoulders.

'And we won another title. It's a great way to leave this program. It's awesome!'

'For me, to be a part of a group of kids doing something as amazing as this, it's a second-to-none feeling....,' said Oregon City co-captain Trevor Dye. 'It gives us a lot of momentum heading to state. I'm really excited to see how we can do as a team.'

'I honestly think this is the year we could win [state],' said Youngblood. 'We've got a chance to win five events.'

'Oregon City has never had a top-four team finish at state,' said Thygeson. 'But this could be the year we bring home a trophy. We've been projecting a top-four finish all year, and we've got the athletes through to state who could do it....'

Oregon City district champions included: senior Andy Rondema in the discus (149-3) and javelin (197-1); Youngblood in the pole vault (14-2); junior Beau Brosseau in the shot put (58-10-3/4); junior Justin Cornejo in the 100 (10.88) and 200 (22.21); and the team of seniors Dye and Sam Hoult, and juniors Ryan Cox and Cornejo in the 4x100 relay (42.74).

The Pioneers will also send their 4x400 relay team to state. The Pioneer 4x400 team of Dye, Youngblood, Cornejo and Hoult finished just back of Lakeridge, losing the race by an eyelash, 3:23.39 to 3:23.40.

Dye (50.23) also qualified for state in the 400, where he finished second to Grant standout Nate Halverson (49.83). And Brosseau (183-0) qualified in the javelin, where he finished second to Rondema.

The Pioneers head to state with several athletes ranked in the top eight in the state in their events, including: Brosseau (first in the shot put and fourth in the javelin), Rondema (third in the javelin), Youngblood (third in the pole vault), and Cornejo (fifth in the 100 and sixth in the 200). Oregon City's 4x400 relay team has the fourth-best time.

Cornejo came through with the most impressive performances at district, breaking his own school record in the 100, setting a new school record in the 200, helping Oregon City's 4x100-meter relay team tie a school record in that event, and helping pace Oregon City's 4x400 relay team to a near school-record time.

The old record in the 200 was 22.34, set by both Tim Nichol and Jeff Matychuck way back in 1984.

'I'm going to state in four events,' said Cornejo. 'Hopefully I can make the finals in all four and show the state what I can do.'

Cornejo said following his win in the 100, 'Breaking 11.00 is a great landmark for me. Now I know I can compete with the best in the state, and I'm looking forward to it.'

Rondema, who came through with new career-bests in winning his events, was ecstatic following his wins.

'This is really huge,' he said. 'I've been working for this since I started track six years ago.'

Rondema added, 'I think I can win [state in] the javelin.'

Youngblood said, following his team's performance in the 4x400 relay, '[Our time is] a four-second PR. We're just two seconds off the school record. It feels awesome! We're going for a school record at state.'

Besides winning the pole vault and competing in the relay, Youngblood scored in the high hurdles and high jump, placing fourth in the intermediate hurdles and eighth in the high jump.

Oregon City junior Brady Heinsoo placed third in the high hurdles; Hoult placed third in the 400; junior Daniel Slack placed third in the triple jump and seventh in the high hurdles, and seniors Nathan Meeker and Bradley Laughlin placed fifth and sixth respectively in the 3,000.

Oregon City girls

place second

Oregon City girls rallied around their depth to score 127-1/2 points, and the Pioneers finished runner-up to state power Lakeridge (150-1/2) at district. Rounding out the scoring were: Grant 83-1/2, Lake Oswego 93, Clackamas 70, Canby 68-1/2 and West Linn 58.

The Pioneers scored points in every event, and they had at least two placers in eight of the 15 individual events.

Mikayla Friend was the only Oregon City girl to win an event. Friend had a tremendous district meet, launching the shot put 40-8-1/4 to win that event by three feet; and launching the discus a PR of 130-5 to win that event by 18 feet.

'I'm feeling pretty good,' Friend said on Friday. 'Today is my birthday, and I've got two district titles.'

Friend noted that this is only the second year that she's competed in track and field.

She said of her goal at state, 'To do the best I can.'

Friend heads to the state 6A meet with the second-best mark in the shot put (41-8) and the fourth-best mark in the discus. Her discus throw at district was a career-best mark by six feet.

Senior Marissa Gehring will join Friend at state. She cleared 10-0 and placed second at district in the pole vault.

Senior Emily Shannon just missed making state in two events, placing third in the long jump (16-1) and third in the triple jump (35-4). Her mark in the long jump was a personal best.

Oregon City girls were tough in the distances. Junior Rachel Crawford (4:59.07) and freshmen Zoe Clegg (5:03.24) and Miranda Nelson (5:05.61) placed third through fifth in the 1,500, all three with personal-record times.

Crawford (2:24.37) and Clegg (2:28.17) also went three-five in the 800, and Nelson placed third in the 3,000 (10:50.08).

Oregon City junior Katie Kohler placed third in the low hurdles, completing the race in a PR of 46.86.

Sophomore Halle Ward made Oregon City's top-five all-time in the high hurdles, running the race in 16.44, good for fourth place.

Oregon City junior Catelyn Preston just missed making state in the javelin, placing third with a throw of 127-4.

Building year

for Clackamas

In what Clackamas coach Jeff Kelleher has termed 'a building year,' the Cavaliers qualified only three athletes for state, and Clackamas boys and girls both placed fifth at district in their respectively team standings.

Senior Natasha Rowland was a standout for Clackamas girls, earning runner-up honors and advancing to state in both the high hurdles (16.17) and the low hurdles (46.06). Rowland's time in the intermediates was a personal record, and she set a personal record in the preliminaries of the high hurdles, with an effort of 16.1.

Rowland said of her runner-up finish in the high hurdles, 'This is the first year I've competed in the highs, so I was pretty excited.'

She said her main goal at state is 'to get in the 45s in the intermediates.'

Rowland heads to state with the 10th-best time in Class 6A in the intermediate hurdles. A time of 45.90 would likely land her a spot in the state finals.

Clackamas boys advanced two athletes to state with runner-up finishes, senior Lopaka Searle in the triple jump (44-8), and sophomore Connor McLean in the pole vault (13-8). Both marks were personal records.

Searle and McLean both placed in three events. Searle cleared 5-10 for fourth place in the high jump, and he placed seventh in the long jump (20-2-1/2); McLean placed sixth in the high hurdles (16.01) and sixth in the intermediate hurdles (41.68).

Searle, who had a best of 41 feet in the triple jump heading into this season, commented on making state: 'It means a lot. It's my senior year, and I wanted to go out with a bang.'

Searle said his goal at state is 'to break 45 feet.'