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



James C. Anderson

Sept. 18. 1928 - Sept. 13, 2012

James C. Anderson died on Sept. 13.

He was born on Sept. 18, 1928, to Edwin and Florence (Chase) Anderson in Kansas City, Kan. He had two sisters, Edith and Alice. He lived in Kansas City and in Manhattan, Kan.

He went into the U.S. Army and later made a career in sales with the company Varityper.

On Dec. 7, 1952, he married Genevieve Capps, in Huntsville, Ark.

Surviving are: his wife, Genevieve; children, Daniel Anderson, Eric Anderson and Rodney Anderson of Portland and James Anderson of Oregon City; his grandchildren, Ashley, Joe, Anthony, and John Anderson of Portland, Daniel and Ian Anderson of Oregon City, and Angie, Rhontu, Krista, Amanda and Christopher Anderson; and great-grandchildren, Kayla, Jacob and Korina.

He was preceded in death by: daughters, Laura and Cheryl; son, Lawrence; and grandson, Danny Joe.

James Anderson was interred at Willamette National Cemetery on Sept. 24.

Anthony “Tony”

Bell Barrett

Oct. 20, 1957 - Sept. 17, 2012

Anthony “Tony” Bell Barrett died in Portland on Sept. 17, after a battle with liver disease.

He was born in Vancouver, Wash., to parents Bobby and Margaret Barrett on Oct. 20, 1957. He was raised in Portland and graduated from David Douglas High School in 1976.

He enjoyed fishing, camping and being outdoors.

He is survived by: his mother, Betty Barrett; daughters Shana Barrett, Mallory Meede and Megan Virgin; sons, Tony Barrett and Devin McIntyre Barrett; brothers, Keith and Mark Barrett; and nine grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his father, Bobby, and brother, Robert.

There will be a memorial picnic/potluck for family and friends at Eagle Fern Park from 11a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 6.

To sign the online guest book and to light a candle in his honor visit anewtradition.com.

Arrangements: Crown Memorial Center Milwaukie.

Thomas Vernon Dews

Aug. 5, 1946 - Sept. 19, 2012

Thomas Vernon Dews died in Portland on Sept. 19.

He was born in St. Helens on Aug. 5, 1946, to parents Joseph Garrett and Evelyn Mary Dews. He was raised in St. Helens and attended Scappoose High School.

In 1968 he joined the U.S. Army and served his country until being discharged as a Vietnam veteran in 1970. He settled mainly in Southeast Portland, but moved to Milwaukie in 2006, where he remained until his passing.

He loved classic cars; he would buy them, restore them and then sell them and start all over with another. He bought and restored a classic 1968 Chevy pickup that he cherished. He liked going to cruse-ins to see the classic cars and would enter his ‘68 Chevy, winning many trophies and awards.

He was a great provider for his family; he was rough and gruff on the outside but soft on the inside, which was one of his greatest enduring qualities. He was also known for his loud and contagious laugh; you always knew where he was because his laugh could be heard all around.

Mr. Dews is survived by and will be greatly missed by: his significant other of 34 years, Linda Johnson; sister, Kathleen, and her husband, Harold Bowers; daughters, Teresa Lang and Debbie Yax; grandson, Joshua Dews; granddaughter, Frisha Thompson; and two great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his daughter, Patricia Dews.

There will be a memorial service with military honors at Willamette National Cemetery at noon on Tuesday, Oct. 9.

To sign the online guest book and to light a candle in his honor, visit anewtradition.com. Arrangements: Crown Memorial Center.

Donald Stanley Henson

June 13, 1949 - Sept. 5, 2012

Donald Stanley Henson died on Sept. 5, in Clackamas.

He was born in Walnut Ridge, Ark., to parents Lemuel and Mary Henson on June 13, 1949. He joined the U.S. Navy and served in Vietnam.

He loved to eat; beans and cornbread especially. He enjoyed shooting, camping, fishing, road trips and anything else outdoorsy. Protection of his family meant the most to him. He loved making people laugh and telling stories; everyone loved his stories and he had a true zest for life.

His philosophy in life can be best summed up with this old Babe Ruth quote entitled “Beer Wisdom”: “Sometimes when I reflect on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. I think it is better to drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.”

Mr. Henson is survived by: his friend and wife of 20 years, Martha Henson; daughter, Jeri Lynne (“Lil Kid”) Henson; brother, Jerry Henson; and his two granddaughters who were the light of his life, Trinity Henson and Presley Criswell. He will be missed greatly, but we take comfort in knowing his pain is gone. We’ll see you later “Donnie,” “Pop,” “Grampa” and “Papa Don.”

To sign the online guest book and light a candle for him, visit anewtradition.com.

Arrangements: Crown Memorial Center.

Lorna Updenkelder LaFarge

July 9, 1918 - Sept. 11, 2012

Lorna Updenkelder LaFarge died on Sept. 11.

She was born July 9, 1918, in Petoskey, Mich., to parents Elizabeth and Ervin Updenkelder. She had a sister, Mae Faunce, and a brother, Robert Updenkelder.

She came to Oregon with her parents and brother in 1929 to live in the Oregon City area. She was a charter member of the Oregon City Church of Christ Christian Church where she met Wayne LaFarge and they were married on April 9, 1939. They had five children: Paul, Richard, Suzanne, Mark and Stephen

Mrs. LaFarge was an active member of Oregon City Church of Christ and later, Milwaukie Christian Church. She taught Sunday school, sang in the choir and for years sang with Wayne at countless weddings and funerals in the local area.

She was active in County Home Extension and was a member of the Carus Unit. She was also on the County Council Extension Board for several years. Though she never worked outside the home, she was an avid gardener, seamstress and homemaker.

Wayne and Lorna celebrated 50 years of marriage in 1989 and the two were married nearly 57 years.

Mrs. LaFarge is survived by her children; 10 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; and one great-great grandchild.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Oct. 11, at the Milwaukie Christian Church, 5197 S.E. King Road, Milwaukie. Remembrances should be given to The Milwaukie Christian Church.

Cremation arrangements and burial at Willamette National Cemetery were handled by Hillside Chapel, Oregon City.

Marvin McElroy

June 15, 1938 - Sept. 22, 2012

Marvin McElroy died on Sept. 22 at the age of 74.

He was born June 15, 1938, in El Paso, Texas. He served in the U.S. Navy, and was stationed in Astoria. After leaving the Navy, he returned to El Paso where he was a firefighter and met the love of his life, Marsha.

Mr. McElroy became co-owner of Kessel’s Industrial Supply Company where he worked until his retirement in 2002. He and Marsha then relocated to Oregon City, where he could enjoy his passions of hunting and fishing.

His pleasure came from helping others, and he devoted many hours to his church, whether it was helping to build homes in Guatemala or simply greeting everyone at the front door on Sunday morning. He enjoyed sharing his love of the outdoors with friends and family and took pride in being a tour guide for anyone that would come to visit. He never met a stranger and was loved and respected by all who knew him.

Mr. McElroy is survived by: his wife, Marsha; daughter, Liz Shumpes, and her husband, Skip; daughter, Diane McElroy; daughter, Lucy Paris, and her husband Riley; son, Marvin McElroy Jr., and his wife, Beth; son, Chris Haddad, and his wife, Jennifer; son, Wayne McElroy, and his wife Beth; son, David McElroy; numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren and his first wife, Diane.

He was preceded in death by: his parents, Anna and Sturgeon McElroy; his brother, Craig McElroy; and his daughter, Nancy McElroy.

A celebration of life was held on Sept. 26 at Oregon City United Methodist Church.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the Oregon City United Methodist Church. Credit card donations by phone can be made by calling Holman-Hankins Bowker & Waud Funeral Services at 503-656-2661.

Edna Jean “Jeanne” Olmstead

Jan. 5, 1936 - Sept. 22, 2012

Edna Jean “Jeanne” Olmstead died on Sept. 22 in Oregon City, at age 76.

She was born in Geneva, Ill., on Jan. 5, 1936. She arrived in Oregon in 1940 and lived here until 1972, when she moved to California. She returned to Oregon in 2004.

She worked for many years as a bartender, and enjoyed reading, crocheting, knitting and was a master at crossword puzzles. She enjoyed the 700 Club and was a contributing member.

She is survived by: her daughter, Valarie Zimmer; son, Joseph Zimmer; nine grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

She was predeceased by her son, Ernest Zimmer.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Arrangements: Crown Memorial Center - Milwaukie.

Velva Verleene Vitro

Nov. 7, 1934 – Sept. 23, 2012

Velva Verleene Vitro died on Sept. 23.

She was born in Sheffield, Ala., on Nov. 7, 1934, to Mr. and Mrs. Ed Hackleton of Ulm, Ark. She attended Zion Lutheran School in Ulm. She moved to Oregon in 1950 and married Anthony Vitro in 1954; they were together 58 years.

She belonged to the St. John the Apostle Catholic Church in Oregon City, and was a mother and housewife. She was active in the Independent Order of Foresters, Red Hat Society and the Clackamette Gem Club. She enjoyed rock trips and shows, loved antique trips to the coast and traveling. She also enjoyed raising bonsai plants.

She is survived by: husband, Anthony Vitro; children, Joseph, Donald, John and Anna Vitro; grandchildren, Robert, Nicklous, Crystle, Jenny, Mathew, Amy and Christina Vitro; and two great-grandchildren, Dominick and Lily.

A service will be held at 10 a.m. on Oct. 5 at St. John the Apostle Catholic Church, 417 Washington St., Oregon City; she will be laid to rest in the cemetery there.

Esther Mae


June 4, 1920- Sept. 11, 2012

Milwaukie resident Esther Mae Wanamaker died on Sept. 11 at age 92.

She was born on June 4, 1920, in Cuivre, Mo., to Elmer and Florence Witmyer. She was raised in Missouri, but lived in Sellwood and Milwaukie.

She was employed as a switchboard operator, and was retired.

She is survived by: nephew, David Wright; granddaughter, Emily Gill; great-grandson, Elisha Gill; and cousins, Ann Wasson, Neal O’Leary, Doris Powell, Wanda Thompson and Dale Noel.

She was preceded in death by: half-sister, Mary Ruth Umphrey; and son, Bradley Wanamaker.

Arrangements: Care Funeral Services of Oregon.