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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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Gladstone girls defend 4A title


Streed, Schumaker and Robinson earn individual titles

by: BY JOHN LARIVIERE - Gladstone athletes and coaches pose proudly with their first place team trophy from the 2013 Class 4A State High School Track and Field Championships.EUGENE — Gladstone coeds left it all on the field on the meet’s final day and successfully defended their team title at the 2013 Class 4A State High School Track and Field Championships, held at Hayward Field May 24-25.

The Gladiators tallied 65 team points and finished just ahead of Newport (61), Molalla (56), Cottage Grove (56) and North Valley (55 points) in a very competitive field.

“After the first day, the next day we knew we had to hit everything [to win the meet],” said Gladstone coach Joan Kintz. “But the girls came back focussed. They knew what they needed to do, and they scrapped and fought, and got it done. I couldn’t be prouder.”

Kintz added, “This group is really special. Five of the girls also won state championships in soccer, and the seniors have five state championships now in their high school career — three in soccer and two in track and field. That is pretty amazing!”

It’s Gladstone’s most successful run in track and field since 1996-1998, when Gladstone girls won three consecutive state titles.

It was a total team effort that earned the Gladiators the 2013 team title. Gladstone scored in seven events and nine girls contributed points to the winning tally.

Clutch performances in the triple jump and in the discus late in the meet clinched the title.

by: BY JOHN LARIVIERE - Madison Cronin flies in the state finals of the triple jump at the University of Oregons Hayward Field. The Gladstone High School senior won the event with a career-best mark of 35-10-3/4.Ranked first and fourth respectively, Gladstone senior Madison Cronin and Gladiator junior Kendall Schumaker came through in the triple jump, Cronin winning the event with a career-best mark of 35-10-3/4, and Schumaker placing third in a near PR of 34-3-1/4. It was the first individual title for Cronin, who placed third in the long jump and third in the triple jump at the 2012 state meet.

A three-peat for

D’onna Robinson

Senior D’onna Robinson got it done in the discus, launching the implement 132-7 to claim her third state title in the event.

by: BY JOHN LARIVIERE - Gladstone High School senior Donna Robinson made it a three-peat at the recent Class 4A State Track and Field Championships, winning the discus for a third consecutive year.“My coach came to me [during the finals] and told me we needed the points, so I had to win,” Robinson said. “No pressure. The discus was the last event scored and if I’d finished second we would have lost [the team title] by a point.”

Robinson, who fouled on four of her six attempts, was in second place when she came through with her winning throw.

“I’ve had a great [high school] career,” Robinson said. “Two years as state champs with my team, three individual championships, and having my dad [Steve] and step-mom [Michelle] there for me at every single meet, and now my boyfriend [Andrew Chiodo] there for me also. It’s been a great experience. I can’t think of anything else I’d rather do.”

The Gladiators scored big in the field events, winning points in every field event except the high jump.

Cronin finished runner-up to Molalla standout Claire Thomas (18-2-3/4) with a career best leap of 17-10-1/2 in the long jump.

Robinson repeated as state runner-up in the shot put, with a near PR of 40-8-3/4.

Streed reigns

in the pole vault

Gladstone sophomore McKenna Streed, who has seen limited action this spring because of a stress fracture, came through big-time in the pole vault, winning the event with a vault of 11-6. Streed also scored big for the Gladiators as a freshman, clearing 11-3 and placing second at state.

by: JONATHAN HOUSE - Gladstone sophomore McKenna Streed was well over the bar on this attempt at the Class 4A State High School Championship Track and Field Championships. Streed, who cleared 11-6 to win the pole vault, said she has aspirations of going over the bar at 14 feet before she finishes high school. The best mark recorded by a high school female pole vaulter this spring was 13-9, by an athlete from a high school in Texas. Streed has already cleared 12 feet in indoor competition, and she holds Gladstone High Schools outdoor school record, at 11-8.Streed said of her win in the pole vault, “It was a little surprising. I was glad my foot held up. It was the first meet that I competed in this year that my foot didn’t hurt.”

Battling a stress fracture for the past eight months, Streed had been wearing a walking boot and had practiced only once the two weeks prior to the state meet.

“I was very happy I came in first, after last year,” Streed said, noting that last year she finished second on misses and not on height. “And it was nice to win on height and not on misses.”

Streed added, “It has been very cool to be a part of this team. We have some really amazing girls....”

Streed, who holds Gladstone’s school record at 11-8 and has cleared 12 feet at an indoor meet, said of her future goals: “To jump 13 to 13-6 next year and eventually 14 feet. And hopefully the Olympics, when I get older.”

Gladstone senior Courtney Pardee picked up crucial points in the javelin, placing sixth with an effort of 123-3.

Gladstone’s 4x100-meter relay team of seniors Cronin and Taylor Plunkett, junior Kelsey Hathaway and sophomore Mikaela Simac helped get the Gladiators off to a great start on Saturday when they recorded a season’s best time of 50.14, edging out Newport (50.18) for third place.

“Taylor ran the anchor and she out-leaned the Newport girl at the finish,” Kintz observed.

Freshman Tieara Norman was the Gladiators’ hard luck athlete at state.

Norman entered the state meet seeded high in the high hurdles, low hurdles and long jump. But she hit the second hurdle in Friday’s preliminaries of the high hurdles and went to the track hard.

Norman also had misfortune in the 300-meter low hurdles. She was leading two-thirds of the way through the preliminaries, when an ankle that she had injured in the high hurdles, forced her to slow down, and she fell well short of advancing to the finals.

Hobbled by her injury, Norman leaped 16-2 in the long jump, earning fifth place. The mark was 1-1/2 feet shy of her best jump this season.

Asked if her Gladiators might earn a third straight title next year, Kintz said, “We’re losing a lot of points to graduation. But Tieara could come back and be a huge scorer for us. McKenna will be a junior and we’ll have her back; we’ll have Kendall back in the jumps.... And I wouldn’t be surprised if we have some athletes come up from the eighth grade and contribute.... I think we might have a chance to trophy.”

Kintz, who has coached track and field at Gladstone since 1987, was honored by her peers at the Oregon Athletic Coaches Association Coach of the Year Banquet, held the day after the state meet, when they named her their 2012 Girls Track and Field Coach of the Year.

Conroy excels for

Gladstone guys

While Gladstone girls were getting the job done as a team at this year’s state meet, Gladstone boys had an individual standout in Andrew Conway. The Gladiator junior talent cleared a lifetime best of 13-9 to earn second place in the Class 4A boys pole vault. He improved upon his mark from district by nine inches, and the district mark was a personal record by a foot at the time.

“Andrew beat a lot of kids who had beaten him earlier in the season,” observed Gladstone coach Greg Hess.

Conway was within three inches of the mark that won state in 4A.