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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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Perseverance spells success for Sether


And it pays for his college education

by: JOHN DENNY - Proud family members were on hand at Oregon City High School on May 15 as Kyle Sether announced his decision to accept a full-ride scholarship to wrestle for one of the top collegiate wrestling programs in the country, Notre Dame College of Ohio. Pictured are: (seated) Oregon City wrestling coach Roger Rolen and Kyle; and (back, from left) parents Tim and Traci Sether, sister Kelsey, and grandparents Don and Sue Sether.Through perseverance — a never-say-die attitude, hard work, and relentless pursuit of a dream — senior Kyle Sether graduates from Oregon City High School as one of the most accomplished wrestlers in school history.

Over his high school career, Sether qualified for the state high school collegiate tournament all four years, winning state titles in 2011 and 2013, placing third at state in 2012, and compiling a career win-loss record of 160-20.

Wrestling at 103 as a freshman and at 126 as a senior, Sether is first on Oregon City High School’s all-time takedown list, with 316 takedowns during his high school collegiate career. His sophomore year he was an Oregon triple crown winner. His senior year he compiled an overall record of 48-2, including a perfect 45-0 record against opponents from Oregon. And during the past season he did not give up an offensive point to any opponent, anywhere.

Sether helped Oregon City’s team place second at state this year, dominating all of his state-tournament opponents en route to his title. It’s the highest placing at state ever by an Oregon City High School wrestling team.

Sether committed to wrestling for Notre Dame College of Ohio during a signing ceremony before supportive coaches, students, athletes and family, held earlier this month in the high school gymnasium.

Notre Dame is one of the top NCAA Division II wrestling programs in the country. The Notre Dame Falcons were NAIA national champions in 2010 and 2011, and they placed third at the NCAA Division II level this past season, after being ranked the No. 1 D-II program in the country.

A 3.85 student at Oregon City, Sether plans a business major, with a goal of following in his father Tim Sether’s footsteps. After redshirting his freshman year, Sether will wrestle four years for the Falcons. And his education will be paid for through his wrestling scholarship.

“It came down to two greats schools where I had the best opportunity to experience success,” said Sether, who narrowed his choice to Notre Dame or NCAA D-I University of Buffalo, after earlier turning down an offer from the Naval Academy. “When I visited Notre Dame, I fell in love with the school and I knew right away, ‘This is where I want to go.’

“They’re ranked No. 1 and I’m going there because they want me to be on the team. They’re going for the national title, and I want to help them win the title....

“They also have one of the best business school’s in the country. My dad is chief financial officer at OIA Global, and it’s been my dream since I was a kid to become a CFO, just like my dad. To have this opportunity and to have my education paid for, I couldn’t ask for more.”

Sether said another reason he chose Notre Dame is that the wrestling program there reminded him of the program at Oregon City High School.

“[Oregon City coach Roger Rolen] instills in us that wrestling is family, and they do the same thing at Notre Dame,” Sether said. “There’s a family atmosphere. I got along with the guys so well [during my visit to Notre Dame]. I clicked with them right away.”

“Kyle will definitely be missed,” Rolen said. “But his attitude, work ethic, leadership and behavior on and off the mat will continue to be present in our room and around our school. As a coach it will be easy to use Kyle’s qualities as a “model” to help up-and-coming wrestlers to try to emulate.

“I am extremely happy for Kyle, the Sether family and Kyle’s opportunity to continue his dreams and share his passion for wrestling. I plan to follow Kyle’s progress and success during his college years, and it will be an honor and gratifying to know that Oregon City had a part in his successful career — past, present and future. I am honored to be able to call Kyle a friend.”

Sether says his successful high school wrestling career and the resulting scholarship almost didn’t happen.

He was discouraged his freshman year at Oregon City when he won only one of three matches at state, leaving himself short of his goal of winning four straight state titles.

And he was further discouraged at the start of his sophomore wrestling season, when he lost three of five matches at his first competition of the season, the Pacific Junior Open.

“I wanted to give up,” Sether recalls. “I wanted to quit wrestling.... Marc Sprague, my club coach [with the Cobra Allstars] since I was 8-year-olds, is the reason I didn’t, and I can’t thank him enough....”

Sprague recalls, “Kyle said to me, ‘Coach, I can’t do this anymore. I just worked too hard to get beat like this. This was my last match. I’m done. I just can’t do it anymore.’

“His words frightened me, as Kyle and I had shared his dreams to be at the top for the last six or seven years, and I had never heard anything like this from him, or any other kids I’ve coached for 40 years. Kyle was definitely having an emotional meltdown.”

“I did get discouraged,” Kyle recalls. “And I was ready to quit. But Marc Sprague sat down with me and had a long conversation about ‘you reap what you sow.’ That it’s not important if your hand doesn’t get raised. But what is important is you keep working hard....

“Yes, it was tough. Yes I got discouraged. But if you keep working hard, nothing is impossible.”

“As I see it, Kyle won twice,” Sprague says. “He won once when he learned that winning is not victory, but winning is rising each time you fall. That victory comes only through perseverance. For without perseverance, there is no victory....

“Kyle learned that perseverance is one of the greatest seeds of greatness.”