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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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Dream Team is third at state


The Cavaliers knock off Number One-ranked Central Catholic for their best finish at state in four decades

by: JOHN LARIVIERE - Clackamas High School volleyball players pose proudly with their hardware after knocking off top-ranked Central Catholic in Saturdays third-place final of the 2012 Class 6A State Championship Volleyball Tournament, contested over the weekend at Liberty High School. Pictured are: (first row, from left) Cassidy Scott, Claire Walker, Shelby Vasconcellos-Mattocks, Hannah Stultz, Kiana Miller, Sydney Wilson and Marissa Rhodes; and (back) Taylor Agost, Lauren OBrian, Emma Chizum, Shelby Torgerson, Caroline Combs, Tara Deaver-Noblisse, Kasey Toedtemeier and Bailey Bremer.HILLSBORO — Clackamas High School volleyball players did themselves, their school and their community proud at last weekend’s Class 6A State High School Volleyball Championships, defeating top-ranked Central Catholic in the trophy round and capturing the third-place trophy.

Saturday’s win over the Rams capped off a tremendous season. It’s the best showing since 1974, when a Clackamas High team coached by Juanita Arrant finished second to Churchill in the first year of the OSAA championships in volleyball. It’s only the fourth time that a Clackamas volleyball team has trophied at state. The Cavaliers placed fourth in 1996 and they were fifth last year.

Other accomplishments this year included going undefeated (10-0) in league for the first time in school history, defeating all of the top Class 6A teams in the state at least once, and winning their fifth league title. [Clackamas teams were first in the Wilco League in 1974, first in the Three Rivers League in 1996, TRL co-champs in 2010, TRL co-champs in 2011, and first in the TRL in 2012.]

“I’m so happy,” said Clackamas senior co-captain Shelby Vasconcellos-Mattocks. “It’s been one of the best seasons I could have ever imagined. I love the girls on the team so much!”

“It’s an amazing ending to my senior year,” said Cavalier co-captain Hannah Stultz. “We accomplished most of the things we wanted to....

“I really wanted to play in the championship match and win state, but that’s okay. I’m really, really proud of my team. We all came together [in Saturday’s trophy game with Central Catholic]. Beating Central and taking third was a great way to finished up my senior year.”

Vasconcellos-Mattocks explained why this year’s team was so successful: “We all love each other and there was no drama on the team. We played for each other and it made us play harder all the time.”

“The biggest thing is we’re good friends and we’re very close,” echoed Hannah Stultz. “Any time someone made a mistake their teammates were there to support them. It was really fun to be on this team, because everyone loved each other so much.”

“I’m so proud of our girls,” said Clackamas coach Jim Stultz. “Not only for how they competed this year, but for how they represented Clackamas High School with class. They are a true ‘team.’ They play for each other and support each other like no other team I’ve had. They’ve been a coach’s dream.”

Saturday afternoon’s match with three-time defending state champion Central Catholic was an intense battle, with the Cavaliers winning the match in five games, 15-25, 26-24, 25-18, 16-25, 15-13.

Coach Stultz gave this rundown: “The first game did not go well. We made 10 unforced errors and lost 25-15.

“We won the next two sets —  26-24, 25-18. But Central Catholic is accustomed to winning and they came back strong in set four with a dominating 25-16 win.

“In set five we were down 5-1 to start. The girls did not get flustered and tied it at 5. We were tied again at 10.

“Finally we took the lead for good — up 14-11. Central closed to 14-13. But at set-point, Taylor Agost’s kill sealed the deal. We beat Central Catholic for the first time and took home the third place trophy.”

Agost, a 6-2 junior, hit .246 and had 18 kills in the match with the Rams. Vasconcellos-Mattocks (12 kills), Sophomore Lauren O’Brien (9 kills) and junior Emma Chizum (7 kills) were also tough on the attack.

by:  JOHN LARIVIERE -     At left, Clackamas junior Taylor Agost (7) battles at the net with Central Catholic sophomore Whitney Turner (11) in Saturdays third-place final of the Class 6A State Volleyball Championships. Clackamas seniors Hannah Stultz (3) and Shelby Vasconcellos-Mattocks (12) stand ready to assist. All three Clackamas players were selected to the all-tournament team.Hannah Stultz excelled as setter, with 47 assists. She also served 13-for-14, with four ace serves. Senior Kiana Miller was tough on defense, with 17 digs, out of 22 attempts.

Ranked third in the state in the final OSAA power rankings, the Cavaliers advanced to the eight-team Class 6A State Championship Tournament through a first-round win over South Medford (15-13, 25-13, 25-15) on Oct. 31, and a second-round win over 14th-ranked Southridge (25-22, 25-19, 25-21) on Nov. 3.

They won their state-tournament quarterfinal match over sixth-ranked Sheldon (25-17, 25-15, 25-17) on Friday morning, but lost to second-ranked Jesuit (25-18, 25-15, 25-19) in Friday night’s semifinals.

Jesuit went on to top fourth-ranked Roseburg (25-23, 22-25, 19-25, 25-19, 15-8) in Saturday night’s championship final.

The Cavaliers got three players named to the all-tournament team: Stultz, Vasconcellos-Mattocks and Agost.

Stultz served 93 percent for the tournament, with 13 ace serves, 153 assists and 36 digs for the Cavaliers’ three state-tournament matches.

Vasconcellos-Mattocks served 95 percent, had 57 kills with a .268 hitting percentage, passed 2.34 and had 25 digs.

Agost served 90 percent and had 59 kills, with a .261 attack percentage.

O’Brien had 41 kills and eight blocks; Miller served 93 percent for the tournament, with eight aces, passed 2.22, and had 48 digs.