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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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Hard work is paying dividends for Putnam


The Kingsmen make it four in a row in NWOC play

by: JONATHAN HOUSE - Putnam senior Amanda Burge (8) powers the ball past Milwaukie middle blocker Emily Downs in last weeks match with the Mustangs. The Kingsmen defeated the Mustangs 25-10, 25-16, 25-15, avenging an earlier loss.The Rex Putnam Kingsmen have been hot in recent Northwest Oregon Conference volleyball matches.

The Kingsmen last week made it four league wins in a row, dispatching with then seventh-ranked Liberty and cross-town rival Milwaukie, both in three-game matches.

Last week’s win over Liberty (25-17, 25-20, 25-13) was only the Falcons’ third loss in their first 15 matches, and it avenged an earlier loss.

The three-game win over Milwaukie (25-10, 25-16, 25-15) also avenged an earlier loss.

“We’ve been really focussed on taking care of the little things,” said Putnam coach Richard Haner. “Our passing is much better, and it sets up our offense....

“I think we have two of the better outside hitters in the league in Katelyn Knight and Lindsay Bartholomew. Caprial Sides, our libero, she’s doing a great job passing. And Emma Klesser, our setter, is doing a phenomenal job. She’s turned into one of the best setters in the league.

“She reads the ball really well and she plays smart. She can set the ball anywhere on the court, which not many setters can do.”

Haner had Knight with 14 kills, five ace serves, nine digs and a block in the Liberty match. Klesser had six aces, five kills and a solo block, along with 26 assists.

Bartholomew powered the ball to the floor for 10 kills.

Sides also excelled, with 19 digs and 92 percent passing.

Knight also headed the effort in last week’s win over the Mustangs, putting the ball to the floor for 15 kills and hammering out no fewer than six ace serves.

Bartholomew sparked the offense with 12 kills; Klesser had 23 assists.

Sides came through on defense, hustling for 12 successful digs.

The Kingsmen will have their work cut out for them again this Thursday, when they entertain 14th-ranked St. Helens (12-4, 8-2), which entered play this week tied with Liberty in second place in the NWOC standings. Sherwood (12-2, 10-0), ranked sixth in the state, was atop the conference standings.

“The girls are communicating better [than they were earlier in the season],” said Haner. “And they are really being supportive of one another. They’re playing with confidence. They’re not afraid to make mistakes.

“They’re playing the best I’ve had a team play in two years. They’ve worked hard and it’s starting to pay off.”

Cavaliers close in

on the TRL title

The Clackamas Cavaliers continued to close in on the Three Rivers League volleyball title last week, upending Oregon City in their only league match of the week, 25-9, 25-17, 25-17.

With the win the Cavaliers (17-4, 7-0) continued unbeaten in the TRL, a game up on Lake Oswego (17-2, 6-1). Ranked third and sixth in the state respectively, the two teams were to meet for the second time this season on Tuesday (Oct. 16). Clackamas escaped with a narrow win (14-25, 22-25, 25-13, 25-18, 16-14) in a Sept. 25 match at Lake Oswego.

The Cavaliers conclude their league season playing Canby (5-10, 1-6) on the road this Thursday and playing an away game with West Linn (4-13, 2-5) next Tuesday.

Clackamas will likely host a first-round game of the Class 6A state playoffs on Halloween night.

Lake Oswego finishes up with an away match with Lakeridge (13-4, 4-3) this Thursday and a home match with Oregon City (5-11, 1-6) next Tuesday.

Clackamas coach Jim Stultz was pleased with his charges’ play in last week’s match with the Pioneers.

“Overall, it was a great team effort,” he said. “I liked out energy tonight.”

Junior outside hitter Taylor Agost headed the offensive assault with 17 kills (out of 31 attacks). Senior defensive specialist Kiana Miller had 12 digs and senior setter Hannah Stultz came through with 24 assists.

Falcon volleyers

improve to 5-2

In Class 4A volleyball, La Salle Prep volleyers got it done last week, winning three-game matches from North Marion (25-14, 25-9, 25-13) and from Molalla (25-10, 25-16, 25-16).

Heading up the effort against Molalla were Taylor Shannon with eight kills, Gaby Timmen with eight digs and Emily Culley with 10 assists.

Danielle Spirlin (8 kills), Rachel Berger (8 kills), Timmen (4 ace serves), Culley (6 digs and 12 assists) and Lauren Danna (12 assists) led the way against the Huskies.

La Salle coach Liz Banta said: “We know we have a lot of work ahead of us as we head into the last stretch of league. We are taking it one game at a time, and working on improving the little things, such as unforced errors, aggressive serving, and decision making.”

The Falcons (5-2) entered play this week third — behind Estacada (6-1) and Madras (6-1) — in the Tri-Valley Conference standings.

They play Madras on the road this Thursday and they play host to Estacada next Monday. In the first round of league play, they lost to both teams in four games.