Featured Stories

INSIDERS (Sponsored Content)

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


Other Pamplin Media Group sites

Gladiators stun No. 6 Central


Gladstone guys advance to the final eight for only the third time in 25 seasons

MONMOUTH — Intent upon proving themselves one of the top boys basketball teams in the state, the unheralded Gladstone Gladiators did just that last Friday, upsetting sixth-ranked Central 51-42 in a Class 4A state playoff game at Central.

The upset earned the Gladiators a berth in the eight-team Class 4A State High School Tournament, which runs through Friday at Oregon State University’s Gill Coliseum.

It’s only the third time since 1988 that a Gladstone boys basketball team has made the final eight.

Gladstone placed fourth at state in 1988 and the Gladiators were sixth in 2009, when they dropped a 61-59 heartbreaker to Cottage Grove in the fourth-place final.

This year’s team, like the 2009 Gladiator ball club, entered postseason play as decided underdogs. The Gladiators in 2009 finished with an overall record of 15-11, after going 6-6 and placing fourth in the Capital Conference.

This year’s squad went 5-5 in the Tri-Valley Conference and finished as the conference’s fourth and final seed in the state playoffs.

The Gladiators entered this week’s state tournament with a 14-9 record. They were to meet Tri-Valley Conference champion and cross-town rival La Salle (23-2, 9-1) in Tuesday’s state quarterfinals, with the winner advancing to an 8:15 p.m. Thursday night semifinal game with either second-ranked North Valley (24-0) or eighth-ranked Sutherlin (19-7).

Gladstone and La Salle met twice during the league season, with the third-ranked Falcons winning two close game, 42-36 and 40-39.

“I like being underdogs,” said Gladstone coach Ted Yates. “I think people tend to overlook you when your underdogs, and we seem to play best when our backs are to the wall.”

Yates said he was not at all surprised with his Gladiators’ success in postseason.

“Looking back at all the losses we had in close games in league...., the kids kind of lost their confidence,” Yates said. “But the confidence is back. The kids believe they belong in the race. They work really hard, and you can’t count them out in any game.”

Defense was pivotal in the upset of the Central Panthers. The Gladiators rallied around their full-court press to force more than 30 turnovers.

Michael Stoutt (7 steals), Kobe Williams (5 steals) and Jacob Kelly (3 steals) headed up the defensive onslaught.

“I think the keys for us were getting stops,” Yates said. “And we didn’t have that bad quarter where we couldn’t score. That was the biggest difference from [the close games that we lost]. Our confidence is rising.”

The score was tied at 18-18 at halftime. The Gladiators went ahead for good in the third quarter, and they put the Panthers away with sharp free throw shooting in the final period.

“I think that in the second half, we just kind of wore them down,” Yates said. “We had 24 steals, and a lot of those were in the second half.”

Stoutt, Kelly, Trevor Browning and Handsome Smith combined to go 11-for-13 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter.

Through aggressive defense at Central’s end of the floor, the Gladiators held the Panthers to just 22 percent shooting from the field (11-for-48) for the game.

Stoutt (15 points), Austin Galvin (11 points), Handsome Smith (7 points, 4 assists) and Kobe Williams (4 points, 3 assists) headed the Gladiator offensive attack.

“We had some monster games from kids off the bench,” Yates said. “Austin Galvin scored a season high 11 points. He was 5-of-6 from the field, and he had a 3-pointer....

“Kobe Williams came off the bench and really sparked our defense.”

Ranked 15th in the final OSAA power rankings, the Gladiators advanced to last Friday’s state playoff game after upsetting Cottage Grove 53-51 in a state playoff play-in game at Cottage Grove.

Central, the third-place team from the Oregon West Conference — behind top-ranked Cascade (24-1) and fourth-ranked Philomath (17-5), finished the season with an overall record of 18-7, with the Panthers’ only losses to Cascade, Philomath, Yamhill-Carlton, La Salle and Gladstone.

The Panthers gave Cascade a run for its money in a recent game with the Cougars, losing 56-51.

They’ll be back

tough as ever

Gladstone High coeds kept pace with fifth-ranked Cascade for a half in a state high school girls basketball playoff game played at Cascade on Saturday.

Trailing by just five points, at 24-19, at the half, the wheels fell off in the second half, and the Gladiators got blown out 54-32.

A combination of injury, foul trouble and cold shooting did the Gladiators in.

Gladstone senior post Alisa Bradshaw suffered a concussion when she took a charge in the second quarter, and she did not play in the second half.

And the Gladiators sat sophomore guard Molly Webster and Mikaela Simac at a crucial time during the third quarter, when those two got in foul trouble.

The Gladiators also had a tough time getting their shots to drop. For the game, they found the basket on only 25 percent (11-of-44) of their shots from the floor. They made only one of 15 shots from 3-point range and many of the 3-point misses came in the second half, when the Gladiators were attempting to play catch-up.

“The game was pretty physical,” said Gladstone coach Pat Scott. “The fouls were even in the first half, but we picked up some quick ones in the second half and had to sit some people.”

Junior guard Austyn Lowder and senior guard Kassi Sanders led the Cougar second-half surge. Lowder scored 10 of her 12 points in the third and fourth quarters; Sanders scored 7 or her 11 points in the second half.

Senior guard Alejandra Marquez paced the Cougars in scoring with 14 points.

Webster (11 points) was the only Gladiator in double figures in scoring.

The win advanced the Oregon West Conference champion Cougars (19-5, 9-1) to the eight-team Class 4A State Tournament. They were scheduled to play fourth-ranked La Salle (22-3, 10-0) today at 3:30 p.m. at Oregon State University’s Gill Coliseum in the quarterfinals of the tournament.

This is the second straight year that the Cougars have played spoiler for the Gladiators. A year ago Cascade came to Gladstone and won 55-49 in the final playoff round before the state tournament.

Coach Scott said that despite last Saturday’s disappointing loss, he couldn’t be more proud of what his charges accomplished this year, especially considering their youth and inexperience at the varsity level.

“I told the girls not to let this one game diminish what they accomplished,” Scott said. “No one thought they’d be as successful as they were. I’m tremendously proud of them.”

Scott added, “They should be proud of themselves, but not satisfied. This is just a stepping stone toward what’s to come....

“If the kids continue to work hard, and improve, I think the sky’s the limit for us from here on out....”

This year’s Gladstone varsity finished with an overall record of 15-8, after gong 7-3 in the Tri-Valley Conference and tying Madras for second place — behind La Salle (10-0). Bradshaw was the only senior on this year’s varsity.

Gladstone’s jayvee, which was made up mostly of sophomores, also enjoyed success. They went 8-2 in conference (13-6 overall), sweeping every conference team except La Salle.