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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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Putnam coeds finish strong


The Kingsmen hammer No. 10 Mountain View, and they give the defending state champs a run for their money

by: JOHN LARIVIERE - Putnam senior Alea Leibner gets the jump on Mountain Views Nelly Ibarra, as Leibner heads the ball up field in last weeks 4-0 win over the Cougars.The seventh-ranked Rex Putnam Kingsmen were at the top of their game on Nov. 6, as they hammered 10th-ranked Mountain View 4-0 in a first-round game of the Class 5A high school girls soccer playoffs.

The lopsided win advanced the Kingsmen to the Class 5A quarterfinals for the second year in a row.

It was only the fifth time in 15 games this season that the Cougars had been shut out. The other shutouts were at the hands of top-ranked Summit (3-0 and 1-0), third-ranked Bend (2-0) and Class 6A South Medford (4-0).

“We were passing really well,” said Putnam senior co-captain Mariah Maier. “The whole team, everyone, was on top of it.”

Maier said that most of the game was played at Mountain View’s end of the field.

The Kingsmen went up 2-0 in the first half, with senior Fernanda Manzano scoring off a cross from Makenzie Maier, and Makenzie Maier scoring unassisted.

An own-goal near the midpoint of the second half put the game on ice, and Putnam goalie Bella Geist rounded out the scoring, putting the ball in the net on a penalty kick, after Makenzie Maier was taken down on a breakaway.

It was the third consecutive shutout and the seventh shutout of the season for Geist.

“She had a few routine saves,” Mariah Maier said. “She was never really challenged.”

The Kingsmen met their match on Saturday, dropping a 2-0 heartbreaker at second-ranked Sherwood.

It was the 10th shutout of the season for the defending state champion Bowmen (13-1-2), who had held 16 opponents to just 10 goals through play last weekend.

Even with the loss in the quarterfinals, it was a tremendous season for the Kingsmen. They ended up with an overall record of 9-4-2, their only losses to Class 6A Tigard (2-1), and Northwest Oregon Conference teams Parkrose (1-0), eighth-ranked Liberty (2-1) and Sherwood (5-1 and 2-0). Sherwood and Wilsonville played for the state title last fall, with the Bowmen winning 1-0 in overtime.

The Bowmen were to square off with sixth-ranked Willamette (13-3-0) in this Tuesday’s (Nov. 13) semifinals.

This year’s Kingsmen roster included eleven seniors — Shayla Laurendeau, Emily Wilson, Alea Leibner, Fernanda Manzano, Kaylee CdeBaca, Maddie Makinster, Brianna Barnes, Fatima Herrera-Zarate, Chelsea Steelman, Yecenia Arrezola and Mariah Maier.

Leibner (defense) and Makinster (midfield) were both first-team all-conference selections, along with Putnam junior Bella Geist (goalkeeper) and Putnam freshman Rachel Baker (defense).

Sophomore Madi Kading (defense) was named to the NWOC’s second all-star unit.

Two Putnam seniors merited honorable mention in the all-conference balloting: Laurendeau (defense) and Herrera-Zarate (forward).

Putnam guys bow

out at Hood River

by: JOHN DENNY - Putnam made another great run in Class 5A boys soccer this fall, successfully defending the Northwest Oregon Conference championship and advancing to the final 16 of the state playoffs. Vying for the standout team were: (front row, from left) Matt Baker, Luis Perez, Elliot Bixby, Tim Bibian, Jose Rivera, Greg Elkins and Carlos Perez; (second row) Ryan Moore, Sam Batz, Martin Schmidt, Dalan Brown, David Wood, Andrew Ciobanasiu and Jacob Wood; (third row) Oscar Gutierrez-Herrera, Matt Ciobanasiu, Kegan Makinster, Alexis Sanchez, Kiko Antonio, Jonathan Chaires and Jesse Martinez; (back) head coach Mitch Wing, coach Kevin Schwartz, coach Chial Alba and coach Kip McGill; and (not pictured) Dustin Lantz and Ian Kay.It was tough sledding for the Rex Putnam Kingsmen on Nov. 6, as they met one of the state’s top Class 5 boys soccer teams in the first round of the Class 5A state playoffs and bowed out with a 6-1 loss to the fourth-ranked Hood River Eagles.

Hood River went on to drop Wilsonville 2-1 in last Saturday’s quarterfinals, advancing to a match-up with Woodburn in Tuesday’s (Nov. 3) semifinals.

Despite the loss at Hood River, it was a tremendous season for Putnam boys, who repeated as conference champions in the Northwest Oregon Conference, winning only the second league title in the history of boys soccer at Putnam.

Putnam, which was ranked 13th in the final OSAA power rankings, went 6-1 in conference play (10-6-0 overall) and advanced to the final 16 of the Class 5A state playoffs before losing to Hood River.

Conference coaches were so impressed with the Kingsmen that they honored no fewer than seven Putnam players in their conference all-star balloting.

Senior defender Matt Baker and senior forward Jose Rivera were named to the first team, along with Putnam junior midfielder Elliot Bixby.

Putnam senior defender Luis Perez and sophomore midfielder Oscar Gutierrez-Herrera were both second-team all-conference selections.

Senior midfielder Sam Batz and senior goalkeeper Ian Kay received honorable mention in the all-star balloting.