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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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TRL a dogfight to the end


Oregon City and Clackamas are in the thick of things in the TRL softball title chase

by: JON HOUSE - Oregon City junior Morgan Bookout was a nightmare for West Linn on May 7, as her two-run home run plated the winning runs in a 3-1 Pioneer victory over their cross-river rivals.The Three Rivers League softball title chase remained a dogfight heading into this the final week of the league season.

West Linn (12-11, 9-3), Oregon City (13-8, 8-3), Clackamas (10-11, 7-4) and Canby (14-8, 6-6) were all still in contention heading down the home stretch.

Oregon City and Clackamas both appeared strong contenders, both teams having won five of their last six league games heading into this week.

“We’re happy with the progress we’ve made,” said Oregon City coach Dave Adelhart. “We’re starting to really come together as a team, and team play is going to be what it takes to win this league. It’s been a very balanced league, with everyone beating each other....

“We got a real confidence boost [in last week’s game with West Linn]. It was a big lift to the girls’ confidence. We’d gone to their place the last time and taken a real shellacking.”

In games last week, the Pioneers took care of business with West Linn (3-1) and Lake Oswego (13-2 in five innings), while Clackamas edged Canby 7-6 and the Cavaliers dropped Lake Oswego 10-6.

The Pioneers had lost to the Lions 12-3 in an April 25 game at Rosemont Ridge Middle School.

“We had a lot better composure and focus this time,” Adelhart said of last week’s 3-1 win over the Lions. “It was an exciting game, a defensive battle. We got in trouble three times, but Bri [pitcher Brianna Spencer] and the whole defense maintained their composure and got us out of some jams.”

Oregon City did all of its scoring in the bottom of the first inning, and a mighty blow by junior infielder Morgan Bookout proved pivotal.

Junior Kaitlynn Donaca led off Oregon City’s half of the first frame with a base hit, advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Spencer and scored on a two-bagger by senior McKenzie Anderson.

Three pitches later, Bookout unloaded, crushing the ball over the fence in centerfield for a two-run home run and a 3-0 Pioneer lead.

“It was a blast,” said Adelhart. “The fence in centerfield is 16 feet high and it cleared the fence with plenty of room to spare.”

Adelhart added, “It hit the scoreboard and bounced back in. When Morgan got to second she saw the ball still in the park and she stopped at second. I had to tell her, ‘Come on, come on. It’s a home run.’ It’s the first time we’ve ever had anyone hit the scoreboard at our field. It was a long, long home run.”

West Linn took advantage of Oregon City’s only defensive miscues to score an unearned run in the top of the fourth. Two batters reached on errors, and a base hit by Caroline Freiling brought the run around, leaving two runners on base with no outs.

Junior Taylor Katzmarek then hauled down a fly ball in center, junior Devin Hally handled a pop up at first and Spencer got a strikeout-looking to end the inning.

Spencer pitched a complete game, striking out three, walking one and allowing just two hits.

Lefty Sarah VonAhn pitched for the Lions, striking out three, walking no one and allowing four hits.

The Pioneers took hitting practice on the Lakers in their 13-2 rout of Lake Oswego, pounding out no fewer than 15 hits in five innings.

Katzmarek set the tone, hammering a solo home run in the top of the third frame, sparking a five-run rally.

Singles by Donaca, Spencer and junior Ashley Dugan (3-for-3, 4 RBI), two walks and an error, plated four more runs in the inning. Dugan plated two runs with her timely base rap.

The Pioneers put the game on ice in the fourth frame, when they batted through their lineup and put eight more runs on the scoreboard. Katzmarek (3-for-3, 3 RBI) headed up the fireworks, with another solo home run and a two-run double in the big inning.

Donaca (3-for-4, 2 RBI, 2 runs), Spencer, Anderson, Hally and Bookout also had hits in the eight-run rally.

Hally pitched a complete game, striking out seven, walking no one, hitting one batter and yielding just three hits. She was supported by error-free defensive play.

In play this week, Oregon City had games with Canby and Clackamas on May 12 and 13, and at Lakeridge (9-9, 4-7) this afternoon. The Pioneers play host to Lake Oswego (4-16, 0-11) on Friday in their league final.

Junior infielder Jade Haehlen and senior designated hitter Corey Erickson earned heroine honors in last week’s 7-6 Clackamas Cavalier win at Canby.

Haehlen crushed the ball to left-centerfield for a two-run home run in a four-run third inning and Erickson plated what would prove the winning runs with a two-run, two-out single in the top of the seventh.

With Clackamas trailing 3-0, junior Amanda Zehr got things started in the third frame when she drew a walk. Junior Ashley Filler doubled and freshman Maddy Oakden singled to bring one run around. Sophomore Alize Godinez then brought a second run across on a sacrifice. Erickson followed with her blast, and it was a 4-3 ball game, with Clackamas on top for the first time.

The Cavaliers added a single tally in the top of the sixth, when senior pitcher Madisen Vrabel followed up a base hit by junior Cassie Haehlen with a run-scoring double.

In the seventh, the Cavaliers added two more runs when junior McKenzie Giancola and Cassie Haehlen reached on walks and they both scored with two down on Erickson’s single to right-center.

Erickson’s timely hit put the Cavaliers up 7-3. But the game did not end without some excitement.

Canby catcher Colleen Crutchfield followed up a walk and base hit with a three-run home run, trimming Clackamas’ lead to 7-6 with two down in the bottom of the seventh. The Cavaliers then ended the game when Ashley Filler flagged down a fly ball in centerfield.

Vrabel pitched a complete game, striking out five and walking three, while giving up five hits.

One big inning told the story in the 10-6 Cavalier win at Lake Oswego. With the game tied at 2-2, Clackamas scored eight runs in the top of the fifth, when the Cavaliers batted through the order.

Jade Haehlen crushed a three-run home run early in the stanza. Oakden (3-for-4) had a two-run double, Filler had a run-scoring double and Alexis Godinez had a run-scoring base hit.

Vrabel (2-for-4) had two hits in a 10-hit Cavalier offensive attack.

Zehr and Vrabel split time in the circle, striking out five, walking one and giving up eight hits and three earned runs.

Clackamas had an away game with Lakeridge on May 12. The Cavaliers close out the regular season, hosting West Linn this afternoon and Canby on Friday.