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Brought to you by John Sciarra, Bernard's Garage - Auto Repair INSIDER -

John Sciarra, Bernard's GarageWhat’s less fun than getting stuck in a nasty traffic jam? Getting cooked in your car on a hot day.

Summer's right around the corner and 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, the system may need to be recharged. Manufacturers used to use a type of refrigerant known as Freon. Now, manufacturers use R-134a to keep things cold in the cabin.

Working on a vehicle’s 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 peripheral components at the same time.

Bernard’s, which has been in business since 1925, services our clients’ foreign, domestic, hybrid and electric cars, trucks, vans and motorcycles. We offer free pickup and delivery for our customers’ convenience.

Plan ahead and stay cool this season!

Bernard’s Garage

2036 SE Washington St., Milwaukie



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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LETTERS: Support for Fagan, Lehan, Damon, Pauli, Churchill, Reisner, Busch, Measure 3-407, Barbur


by: PHOTO BY RAYMOND RENDLEMAN - Petitioners are upset that an organization opposing a proposed vote on Oregon City urban-renewal decisions has put out a guide using newsprint similar to the official Voters' Pamphlet.I was surprised to see an ad on TV with Rep. Patrick Sheehan claiming that he funded education adequately. If you have kids in school or are a teacher, you know that isn’t true. My kids go to school in the North Clackamas district, where we have cut school days, closed schools, and where my children sit in huge classes due to there being 25% fewer teachers. Sheehan didn’t stop with ignoring the state of our schools, but also resorted to calling his opponent Shemia Fagan a liar because she cares enough about our schools to point out that they are underfunded. The Oregon House needs serious people to make tough decisions so that we can in fact improve funding for our schools. Shemia Fagan, full of common sense and an unstoppable work ethic, is the right choice for HD 51, and I strongly urge people in her district to vote for her.

Dena Hellums

Happy Valley

Lehan and Damon: a win for the county

Charlotte Lehan is no bully. In the years I have known her, she has proved herself over and over again to be an intelligent, practical and caring individual with generations-deep connections in our region. She has proven her love for our history and a passion for our future - and the ability to get things done.

Jamie Damon is quite possibly the most ethical politician I have ever had the pleasure to meet. With her back-to-the-basics lifestyle and international perspective, coupled with her extensive expertise in bringing people together, she’s just what we need to bring balance and civility to our county government.

Lehan and Damon: a winning team for Clackamas County.

William Gifford

Oregon City

Not that Paddy Sheehan!

State Rep. Patrick D. Sheehan is giving me a bad name.

I didn’t mind sharing his name, until I found out that he was hosting fundraisers with lobbyists and started attacking his opponent’s former work experience (as a college student!). Then I had the pleasure of meeting face-to-face with his opponent, Shemia Fagan, who knocked on my door recently. Her passion for our schools is refreshing—I can tell she’s serious about strengthening our schools because of what Oregon schools did for her.

I want our elected leaders to set a good example, and I want my children to be able to learn in a school system that is not harmed by rising class sizes and teachers being laid off! In the end, making up my mind to vote was pretty easy.

Say what you will about going against my heritage, this Patrick Sheehan voted for Shemia Fagan for state representative.

Patrick K. Sheehan


Beware of teabaggers

I am very worried from my observations as to what is going on in our county.

It seems that there is a group of teabaggers (I use that term because most of the people who support the Tea Party do not know what the original Tea Party protest was about) trying to take out local governments.

We should be working with all of the Tri-County governments to make the area better for all. All we have to do is look west to see how Washington Couty has grown. We have the assests (people, land, small and large businesses) to surpass Portland. Why would we not want to?

But this group does not want to be part of this. They want Clackamas County to isolate itself and somehow go it alone.

They are opposed to light rail. Take the train to Hillsboro, Gresham or the Expo Center. Look at all the small businesses that have grown at the stops. The same thing will happen here. Let’s grow our economy.

They object to costs. Until 1980, we have always been able to grow our way out of large deficits. We did it after the enormous debt left by World War II. Now we have supply-side economics (voodoo economics as the president called it), which has exploded our debt. We can overcome that too, but we have to work together and not be afraid of growth.

We need to elect people who want to grow our county, and I believe Lehan and Damon will do that.

Robert P. Johnson


Fagan for education

Education is not just a checkmark for elected officials to add to their resume or a campaign sound bite. It is the fundamental issue for Oregon.

Shemia Fagan understands that investing in stable, sustainable education funding is the only way to build a capable workforce that will help make Oregon competitive—regionally and globally. Her direct experience on the David Douglas School Board, and as a new parent, gives her the insight, commitment and intelligence necessary to support our kids, our community and our economy.

Vote to send Shemia Fagan to the Oregon State Legislature.

Kyle K. Walker

North Clackamas School Board member

Chamber endorses Pauli

The Board of Directors for the Oregon City Chamber of Commerce voted unanimously to endorse Carol Pauli for Position 2 on the Oregon City Commission.

Carol has a proven track record of community involvement by organizing the 7th Street Celebration and Fill a Stocking Fill a Heart events. She has served on city committees and was chosen by the current Oregon City Commissioners to fill a vacant seat on the City Commission.

Carol Pauli is an active member of the Oregon City Chamber as owner of the Midway Historic Public House and understands the important concepts of business/employment lands contributing to the tax base. Carol’s experience and common sense approach bring balance to the commission and represent the views and needs of citizens and businesses in our community.

Amber Holveck

Executive director

Churchill for City Council

Scott Churchill, a candidate for Milwaukie City Council, is one of my neighbors. We have frequently spoken about issues the city was/is undertaking and I have always been impressed with his breadth and depth of understanding of the problems and possible solutions. I do not impress easily! He has earned my respect and admiration for the way he lives his life.

It has been easy to identify his commitment to his family, his neighborhood and the city.

His work on the Planning Commission and with the library has been a genuine sterling benefit to the city. I have lived here for 45 years and have seen some real door stops, dimbulbs and potted plants elected.

We could not do better than this quiet, serious, dedicated man. His opponent is right: (“Milwaukie candidates seek big changes,” Oct. 17), Scott Churchill is a “cool guy.” This is the guy we want voting on our neighborhood and city


Jean Baker


No more games

As a high school student, I know how difficult large class sizes are on kids. Large classes and mandatory excused periods have impeded students’ learning, and left us at a disadvantage.

I was disappointed to see that Rep. Patrick Sheehan attacked Mrs. Shemia Fagan for addressing underfunded schools. Rep. Sheehan is playing politics instead of addressing the real issue: improving public education.

I was taught to respect all people, no matter how much I disagreed with them, but my state representative is attacking Mrs. Shemia Fagan’s character instead of the real issues. This is the reason my generation is often too discouraged to get engaged.

I can’t vote yet, but I’ll be urging all my family and friends who can vote to vote for Shemia Fagan. I want real change, not more political games.

Alex Parini

Happy Valley

Reisner cares about Gladstone

I am supporting Neal Reisner, who is running for Gladstone City Council Position 4, because he cares about Gladstone.

This is evident by his involvement in different aspects with the city and school district since he moved in as my neighbor over 22 years ago. Over the years, Neal has sought out my opinion while making discussions to keep our great community livable.

On the Budget Committee he suggested changes, which were adopted by the City Council. As a Gladstone School Board member plus a Parks and Recreation Board member, he was always thinking of the kids first because they were the most affected. For most of the last 22 years Neal has also been a member of the Planning Commission and is currently the Chairman.

He has volunteered hundreds of hours with the city and school district, plus being a youth sports coach with the hope of keeping our community great. Please join me in voting for Neal Reisner.

Marsha Gordon


Busch improving OC

Why would someone like Tom O’Brien try to insinuate the Busch family is not worthy of urban-renewal support (Letters, Oct. 17)?

The guidelines for the grants in downtown Oregon City were established to seek more rapid improvements in this area. The grant application was fully vetted in the Urban Renewal Commission and awarded.

With Obrien’s thoughtless editorial comments, he has managed to offend the oldest continuous business in Oregon City. It appears it was done to try to score political points. All that was done by the Buschs was to follow the rules. Obviously if O’Brien didn’t like the guidelines, he could have attacked them and not a business who was simply following those guidelines.

The comparison to other development outside the urban-renewal district is not relevant since there is no option for use of urban renewal, at this point, in the Hilltop area. Fortunately, there was much infrastructure improvements in the Hilltop when the urban-renewal district was open in that area and businesses are taking advantage of those improvements.

Making urban-renewal decisions political is not good for Oregon City, vote no on 3-497.

Don Slack

Oregon City

You’ need to regain trust

I’m sick of being punished by exorbitant property taxes. Supporting Meausre 3-407 says, “Get a clue, government and business leaders.”

We will not stand by and allow further mismanagement of our hard-earned money. You had your chance and have profited considerably by suspicious decisions and by destroying those honest individuals who dare to oppose you.

You are the ones who have caused this dilemma and seem to be screaming all sorts of “doom and gloom” predictions. Well, so be it. You have left the honest citizens of Oregon City angry. You no longer deserve a free rein and the opportunity for personal gratification at our expense.

Yes, perhaps the urban-renewal-money management may become more cumbersome for you to manipulate, but until trust can be restored to this city, you should no longer assume the sole responsibility of managing large sums of tax money.

Juanita McMillin

Oregon City

Think two Scotts

For at least 20 years Milwaukie has been known as the city of the “done deal,” meaning that anything the masters on the dais want, they get, the citizens be damned. We’ve tried everything, even recalling three councilors in 1997, but nothing worked. I have a theory about this: when you elect a person to council, she or he thinks you are the smartest person on the planet because you realized they were the best person for the job, and six months later they don’t think you’ve got enough sense to pour sand out of a boot. Human nature.

To swing the odds more in our favor, I think we should analyze this a little further. First of all, who should we automatically eliminate from any consideration for our council?

A short list: Downtown business owners—they could tend to play a little monopoly, thus losing sight of public interest. By the way, is there an Adams Street on a Monopoly board?

Corporate attorneys. Most of them are completely honest, but if their firm is large enough it will have been employed, at least peripherely, on a Metro or TriMet project, making conflict of interest inevitable. It would further erode our self-determination and independence. If you’ve ever seen any Milwaukie councilors at a Metro gathering over the years, you’d know what I mean. They tend to act like bobble-head dolls, bowing and scraping at everything spewed out by the local masters of Orwellian doublespeak.

Employees of any local government, such as a county or transit authority, or anything of that nature. Conflict? Obvious. What does the boss want me to do on that issue? Subliminal thoughts can wreak havoc on actions.

Photographers. When they peer through that view-finder it tends to make almost everything a little fuzzy and distorted, and would most probably affect their judgement.

At this time we are sitting at the crossroads of many major decisions. We need clear-headed thinking and vision to keep on track to at last finish the Riverfront Park project, something that has been sidetracked many times before. This is the one major project that will show the region that Milwaukie has changed its mindset, and will go forward with the park and develop it into the jewel we’ve long envisioned.

My choice for the two candidates who have the vision, intelligence and credentials to work with existing council members and staff to accomplish that goal are Scott Churchill and Scott Barbur.

These are two multifaceted men, who have the capabilities to help bring Milwaukie to heights often promised but never realized. When you vote for council, just think two Scotts.

Ed Zumwalt


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