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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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Cavs are the team to beat


Clackamas is alone atop the TRL, after taking two games from LO

After two weeks of league play, Clackamas appears to have the inside track for the 2013 Three Rivers League baseball title.

After sweeping defending state champion Oregon City in the first week, the Cavaliers last week went 2-1 in their series with Class 6A state power Lake Oswego.

Last Friday’s 3-1 win over the Lakers at Lake Oswego was the Cavaliers’ 14th win in 16 ball games this season. They also won 2-1 at Lake Oswego on April 15, and they dropped a 2-1 barnburner to the Lakers on April 17.

Entering play this week, the Cavaliers (14-2, 5-1) were ranked third in the OSAA power rankings, behind top-ranked North Medford (13-4) and Roseburg (11-3). Lake Oswego (11-6, 4-2) was ranked sixth in the state in Class 6A.

The Cavaliers have a three-game series with Canby (5-11, 1-5) this week, playing the Cougars at home Monday and Friday, and at Canby this afternoon.

“The Three Rivers League is a tough league and 5-1 is a great start,” said Clackamas coach John Arntson. “Especially when the first two teams you played were Oregon City and Lake Oswego.

“But we can’t overlook anyone. Canby’s a good baseball program and we better show up ready to play [in our three games with Canby]. We’ve got to stay focussed and take it one game at a time. Keep grinding away and doing what we’ve been doing.”

Arntson said he’s been pleased with the way his charges have been playing in every phase of the game, except for the 2-1 loss to Lake Oswego, a game in which his Cavaliers struggled to get timely hitting.

“We left 11 guys on base [in the loss],” Arntson said. “And six of those 11 guys were in scoring position. We couldn’t get the timely hits.”

Last Friday’s 3-1 win at Lake Oswego was a defensive gem. Taylor Stinson pitched a complete game. He didn’t strike out anyone, but he scattered five hits and he didn’t give up any free passes. He made the Lakers put the ball in play, and the Cavaliers played great defense behind him.

Clackamas right fielder Michael McDonald made five catches for outs and Stinson helped his own cause, fielding four ground balls for four assisted putouts.

“Taylor did a really good job of throwing strikes and we played really good defense behind him,” Arntson said.

The Cavaliers went up 2-0 in the first inning. Jared Bell rapped a one-out single up the middle, Austin Kelly reached as a hit batsman and Jarrod Switzer walked to load up the bases. Bell scored on a balk, and Cade Wilkins plated Kelly with a sacrifice fly to center.

The Cavaliers added an insurance tally in the top of the fourth. Wilkins walked; pinch runner Ryan Gilbert advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Stinson and a wild pitch. Jake Iverson walked, and Gilbert scored on a safety squeeze by Aaron Ahlstrom.

The Lakers scored their only run in the bottom of the seventh, scoring with two down on a base hit and a double. Stinson then got a Laker batter to ground out to shortstop to end the game.

The Cavaliers squelched a Laker attempt at a rally through stellar defense in the bottom of the fifth. Back-to-back singles put Lake Oswego players at first and second with no one down. Stinson fielded a bunt and fired to Iverson covering third for the first out. Iverson then fielded a line drive and made the play at first base for an inning-ending double play.

Bell (2-for-4) led the Cavaliers in a six-hit offensive attack.

The 2-1 Cavalier win over the Lakers was a pitchers’ battle between Clackamas senior Austin Kelly and Lake Oswego junior ace Jordan Horak. Kelly struck out eight and walked three, while yielding four hits; Horak struck out 10, walked one and hit one batter, while giving up six hits.

“It was Austin Kelly’s best outing of the year,” Arntson said. “He was around the zone and he had control of all his pitches. Any time Austin has a game like that, we’re going to be extremely tough to beat.”

Clackamas broke a scoreless tie, scoring both of its runs in the top of the fourth. With one down, Kelly reached as a hit batsman. Switzer singled and Kelly and Switzer advanced on a passed ball. Wilkins then hammered the ball up the middle for a base hit, and both Kelly and Switzer came around.

Lake Oswego got a run back in the fifth, scoring with two down on a walk and singles by Mitchel McLaughlin and Jack Anderson. Kelly got Harrison Reece to ground out to Ahlstrom at shortstop to end the inning.

Kelly was money in the sixth and seventh. He made it three-up and three-down in the sixth, picking off the base runner after a lead-off walk and sending the next two batters down swinging. And he retired the side with three strikeouts in the seventh.

Both teams played error-free defense.

One swing of the bat proved the difference in LO’s 2-1 win. Travis Sanders scored what would prove the winning run with a fourth-inning solo home run.

The Lakers took advantage of Clackamas’ only error to score their other run in the top of the second. Following a Cavalier error, Horak reached on a fielder’s choice, stole second and scored with two down on a base hit by Tyler Coleman.

Clackamas scored its only run in the last of the sixth. With one out, Iverson reached as a hit batter. Walks by Ahlstrom and Stinson loaded the bases. Bell then drew a full-count walk to force in the run. LO reliever Jack Kjemhus then retired the side when he got Kelly (2-for-3) to fly out to deep center.

Coleman pitched the first 6-1/3 innings for Lake Oswego, striking out five, walking two and yielding five hits.

Bell pitched a complete game for Clackamas, striking out five, walking one, giving up four hits and allowing just one earned run.

“I thought Jared Bell pitched really well,”Arntson said. “I felt bad for him because he was pitching against his former school and I know he wanted it. We just couldn’t get the timely hit.”