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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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Jensen, Lillie are state 4A Players of the Year


The two local athletes are honored as the states best players in Oregon Class 4A high school soccer

by: JONATHAN HOUSE - Gladstone senior Amber Jensen makes a body block to gain possession in Gladstones 2012 state final with Mazama. Jensen, who helped lead Gladstone to three state titles during her high school career, has been named Class 4A girls soccer Player of the Year for the second year in a row.The state’s Class 4A soccer coaches have honored two local high school soccer players as their 2012 Oregon 4A Players of the Year.

Gladstone senior Amber Jensen was selected the top Class 4A female player in the state and La Salle senior David Lillie was honored as the top 4A male player.

It’s not the first time Jensen has received the honor. She was also named Player of the Year in 2011 and she was selected first-team all-state as a sophomore. This was the third year in a row that Jensen has been named Tri-Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Year. She made first-team all-league in the Capital Conference as a freshman.

“We were 4A/3A/2A/1A Amber’s freshman year and they didn’t have a 4A/3A/2A/1A all-state team that year,” said Gladstone coach Steve Thomas. “If they had, Amber would have been on that first team too. We’ve gone 64-5-3 [40-0-2 in league] and won three state titles [2009, 2011, 2012] and four league titles since Amber came into our program and Amber has player a big part in that success....”

by: JONATHAN HOUSE - La Salle senior playmaker David Lillie, pictured on the attack in the Falcons 2012 state final with Philomath, proved tough to stop this fall. The states Class 4A high school coaches have honored Lillie as the Class 4A boys soccer Player of the Year.Lillie was first-team all-state as a junior and he captained the Falcons to a 16-3-0 record and second place in the state this season. Lillie was Tri-Valley Conference Co-Defensive Player of the Year a year ago and he was league Co-Offensive Player of the Year this fall.

“David played for La Salle the last three seasons, playing defense the first two years and central-midfielder this year,” said La Salle assistant coach Derek Ray. “He scored four goals and had 10 assists this year. But you can’t judge David’s accomplishments solely off of stats. You have to watch him play and see the impact he makes on a game to get a full appreciation of his ability and what he is capable of.

“What makes David so special is his versatility. You don’t have many players that can win Co-Defensive Player of the Year one year and then win Co-Offensive Player of the Year the next in one of the best conferences in the state.

“He can play defense and be an instrumental offensive player. He is the epitome of a well-rounded player. He has great ball skills, but he also has a great work ethic and tenacity that are hard to come by at the high school level. He is also a great leader. He served as captain for two years and led both on and off the field.”

Jensen this year played a part in 50 of the Gladiators’ 72 goals, scoring 34 goals and making 16 assists. She had 37 goals and 14 assists as a junior; 15 goals and 11 assists as a sophomore; and 15 goals and 11 assists as a freshman.

Jensen is among only five female players in the history of Oregon high school soccer who have scored over 100 goals during her high school career. The senior forward set new career school records, with 101 goals and 52 assists, breaking the old marks of 83 goals and 42 assists set by 2008 Gladstone High School graduate Emily Tsugawa.

“What makes Amber really special is she can dribble at the same pace that she can run, which very few girls can do,” Thomas said.

“[The 4A Player of the Year honor] means a lot, because I’ve achieved my goal of getting [first-team all-state honors] every year,” Jensen said.

Jensen has verbally committed to play soccer at Portland State University, which has finished atop the Big Sky Conference standings in three out of the last four years.

She plans a criminology major.

“I want to be a police officer when I’m older,” Jensen said.

Jensen says she committed to PSU early because “I wanted to be close to home and, on my visit, I really bonded with the girls on the team.”

“It’s always been a dream of mine [to get state Player of the Year honors],” Lillie said. “It’s something that never seemed possible. You just play your hardest and try your best throughout the season, and then it happens. It’s a great honor.”

Lillie says he is as yet undecided about where he will attend college and whether or not he will play college soccer.

“I’ve been talking with a few coaches,” Lillie said. “But for me the main thing is getting a good education and a degree in something I’m interested in. If I could do that and play soccer too, that would be awesome!”

Lillie says he plans to study business and engineering in college.

Gladstone coach Steve Thomas has been honored as the 2012 Class 4A girls soccer Coach of the Year.

“It’s a nice accolade,” Thomas said. “But like I’ve always told the girls, I’d much rather win a state championship than win Coach of the Year.”

In 15 seasons at Gladstone, his Gladstone girls soccer teams compiled a 160-66-17 record, winning seven league titles and three state titles.

With Thomas at the helm, the Gladiators have gone 64-5-3 overall (40-0-2 in league) over the past four seasons, outscoring opponents 284-23. They were the best defensive team in the state [for all classifications] this fall, outscoring opponents 72-3, en route to a 16-1-1 record (9-0-1 in league).

As freshmen this year’s seniors went 17-0-1 (12-0-0 in league) on varsity, outscoring opponents 65-5 en route to their school’s first state title in soccer. As sophomores they went 14-2-1 (9-0-1 in league), outscoring opponents 63-9 and losing to Mazama in the semifinals; and as juniors they went 17-2-0 (10-0-0 in league), outscoring opponents 84-6 and winning their second state title.

Jensen and Lillie weren’t the only players from their schools to earn Class 4A all-state honors this fall.

La Salle senior forward Dakota Eisel was named to the Class 4A boys first all-state team, and Gladstone goalkeeper Joren Nielson garnered honorable mention in the balloting.

Eisel was La Salle’s leading scorer this fall, with 24 goals. La Salle sophomore keeper Dylan Tran had nine shutouts.

Gladstone senior midfielder Madi Cronin and La Salle senior midfielder Amanda Byrne were named to the 4A girls first team, and Gladstone senior defender Taylor Plunkett was a second-team all-state selection.

Twelve different players scored goals for Gladstone girls this fall and 14 players had assists. Gladstone sophomore goalkeepers Molly Webster (10 shutouts) and Gabrielle Wachlin (5 shutouts) teamed up with Gladstone defenders to record a school-record 15 shutouts, while allowing a school record of only three goals.

Other leading offensive players for Gladstone this fall were junior Kelsey Hathaway, 17 goals and 9 assists; junior Kendall Schumaker, 3 goals, 8 assists; Cronin, 3 goals, 7 assists; and junior Cheyenne Stubblefield (4 goals, 5 assists).

Gladstone girls this fall had eight players receive recognition in the Tri-Valley Conference all-star balloting.

Jensen was named TVC Offensive Player of the Year and Cronin was named TVC Defensive Player of the Year.

Senior defender Taylor Plunkett and Hathaway joined Jensen and Cronin on the TVC’s first team of all-stars.

Sophomores Mikaela Simac (defense), Riley Webster (midfield) and Molly Webster (goalkeeper) were selected to the TVC’s second all-star team.

Kendall Schumaker (midfield) and Julia Schumaker (defense) received honorable mention in the balloting.

Hathaway and Molly Webster were also first-team all-conference selections in 2011.

While Lillie and Eisel were on the 2012 TVC boys first all-star team, the Falcons had five players named to the league’s second team of all-stars: senior defender Peter Nguyen, junior midfielder Keegan Wesley, sophomore defenders Kevin Luyamba and Ian Hamel and Tran. La Salle junior defender Stephan Malin garnered honorable mention in the balloting.

Gladstone senior forward Ty Breshears joined Nielsen on the TVC boys first team. Gladstone junior forward Eder Zavala was named to the second team, while junior midfielder Victor Ibarra and freshman defender Andrew Gross gained honorable mention in the all-league balloting.