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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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Gladiators continue tough in summer ball


Gladstone High School's OIBA team continued tough in summer baseball last week, upping their record to 15-8 (6-3 in the OIBA) with wins in five games.

The 15-8 overall record is all the more impressive because 14 of Gladstone's 23 games were against teams from high school's in larger OSAA classifications.

“I like our group,” said Gladstone coach Casey Webster. “We're playing pretty good baseball. They're relaxing and having fun. They're swinging their bats and finding a way to get it done.”

Playing five games in six days, the Gladiators last week defeated Milwaukie twice (9-6 and 10-0), St. Helens (3-2 in nine innings), Horizon Christian (14-2) and Putnam (11-5). They hammered out 50 hits in the five games, while yielding 30 hits.

Devin Neer threw a one-hitter in the 10-0 five-inning shutout of Milwaukie, striking out one, while walking no one.

“Devin threw just 36 pitches and 28 of them were strikes,” Webster said.

Ben Fox (2-for-2, 2 doubles, 3 runs scored), Darnell Washington (2-for-3, 2 doubles, 2 RBI, 2 runs) and Andrew Gross (2-for-4, 2 RBI) headed up the offense, as the Gladiators put runs on the scoreboard in four of the five innings.

Four Gladstone errors nearly proved costly in the 9-6 win over the Mustangs. Only three Milwaukie runs were earned. Still the Gladiators never trailed, building a 7-0 lead through the top of the sixth.

The Gladiators hammered out 13 hits, led by Austin Krieger (3-for-4), Branden Loehr (2-for-4), Fox (2-for-5, 2 doubles, 3 runs, 2 RBI) and Washington (2-for-3, 2 doubles, 3 RBI).

Logan Saltares and Trey DePretto pitched for Gladstone, combining for two strikeouts, while yielding five hits and four walks.

The Gladiators played well all-around in the 3-2 win over St. Helens. Krieger pitched a completed game, striking out seven, walking no one and scattering 11 hits.

Trailing 2-1, the Gladiators scored single tallies in the bottom of the sixth and ninth innings to pull out the wins.

Gross led off the sixth with a base hit, advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Washington and a Lion error, and scored on a base hit by Collin Betnar.

Loehr led off the ninth with a base hit. DePretto was safe when the Lions booted the ball on a sacrifice bunt. Consecutive walks by Daniel Contreras and Fox then forced in the winning run.

Loehr (2-for-4, 2 runs) also scored in the third frame. He led off the inning with a double, advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Trey DePretto, and scored on a two-out double by Fox.

St. Helens second-team all-conference pitcher Bryce Sanford nearly pitched a complete game for Lions, facing all but Gladstone's final batter. He had eight strikeouts, while yielding eight hits and two walks.

The Gladiators took charge of the contest with Horizon Christian in the second inning, when they scored 10 runs on nine hits and a walk. Krieger had a bases loaded triple and Contreras had a two-run triple in the big inning.

Neer went the distance on the hill in the five-inning game, striking out seven and walking two, while giving up six hits.

The Gladiators stung the ball for 12 hits, led by Fox (2-for-3, 2 doubles, 3 runs), Washington (2-for-4, 2 RBI), Betnar (3-for-3, triple, double), Krieger and Contreras.

Putnam made a game of it in its 11-5 loss to Gladstone, thanks to five Gladstone errors.

Nursing a 6-5 lead, the Gladiators put five runs on the scoreboard in the bottom of the sixth to put the game on ice. Tyrus Coady had a two-run single, Betnar had a run-scoring single, Neer had a RBI-walk and Carter Watts had a run-scoring groundout in the big inning.

The Gladiators earned a 10-7 edge in hitting, led by Fox (2-for-4, home run, 2 RBI), Gross (2-for-5, 2 runs), Betnar (2-for-3, 2 runs), Loehr (2-for-3, 2 RBI) and Coady (2-for-2, 3 RBI).

The Gladiators conclude the regular season this week, hosting Scappoose tonight at 7 p.m. and Horizon Christian Friday at 7 p.m., and playing Franklin at 1 p.m. on Saturday.

Sporting a 6-3 record in league, the Gladiators appeared likely to advance to the OIBA State Tournament, which runs July 24-27 at Crescent Valley High School and at Western Oregon University. The top four teams from Gladstone's league will advance to the state tournament.