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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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Cavs top No. 3 Lions in a barnburner


The Cavaliers score the last 11 points in a 48-39 victory

by: JON HOUSE - Clackamas senior post Erica Pagano (right) gets the jump on West Linn sophomore Caitlin Malvar (3) as they battle inside during last Fridays game at West Linn.WEST LINN — Clackamas survived an early-game shooting slump to rally from behind for a 48-39 win over West Linn in a Friday night defensive slugfest between two of the state’s top Class 6A high school girls basketball teams.

The Lions entered the contest ranked No. 3 in the state in the OSAA RPI rankings, while the Cavaliers entered the contest ranked No. 4.

Clackamas trailed 8-2 at the end of the first period, after going one-for-seven from the field.

Rallying around the sharp outside shooting of 5-8 junior Sidney Kolasinski (17 points, four 3-pointers), the Lions widened the gap to 10 points by early in the third quarter.

It was still a 10-point game, at 35-25, when Kolasinski connected from downtown with 1:36 remaining in the third period.

“Turnovers killed us in the first half,” said Clackamas senior playmaker Kaitlyn Reiner. “Once we cut down our turnovers and made some shots, things started going our way.”

Clackamas never led until senior post Erica Pagano answered a West Linn turnover on a five-second call with a 3-point basket with 2:27 to play. Pagano had tied the score for the first time, at 39-39, just 18 seconds earlier, when she scored on an inbound pass from junior wing Erin McDonald. Clackamas out-scored West Linn 11-0 in the final 2:45 of play, as the Lions appeared to panic — tossing up bricks from long range and turning the ball over — as the game wound down.

Reiner and senior wing Sydney Azorr combined to hit 6-of-10 free throws in the game’s final 1:19, to seal the victory.

The play of Clackamas 6-3 sophomore post Peyton Carroll and 5-11 junior post Jordan Rasberry was pivotal in the comeback. They took turns guarding West Linn senior post Morgan Haskin and held the Lion “big girl” scoreless.

“Peyton and Jordan’s [defensive play on Haskin] was huge!” said Clackamas coach Todd Lane. “She’s a very big part of their offense and rebounding. With her in foul trouble most of the game, I think it made a big difference.

“We had her playing under 10 minutes [because of her foul trouble] and with just one rebound. She had 13 rebounds the last time we played them [a 55-40 Clackamas win], and 10 of them were at the offensive end.”

The leadership and poise of seniors Pagano, Reiner and Azorr at crunch time was also huge.

“Their confidence really showed,” said Lane. “Having been down before in big games and their knowing that we could come back was a big calming influence on the rest of the team. We didn’t panic....”

Even with Haskin playing sparingly, West Linn sophomore Caitlin Malvar led the Lions to a 25-21 advantage on the backboards, hauling down 11 rebounds.

Defense was another important factor in the Cavalier comeback win. The Cavaliers forced 27 turnovers, applying pressure both full- and half-court.

McDonald (5 steals), Azorr (3 steals) and junior wing McKenzie Giancola (3 steals) led the defensive assault.

While Kolasinski was the only West Linn player in double digits in scoring, Reiner (15 points, three 3-pointers), Azorr (12 points) and McDonald (11 points) were the top point-getters for Clackamas.

“I think this win was a real confidence-builder for our girls,” Lane said. “West Linn is a very good team and a really quality program.”

“This was definitely one of our toughest games,” said Reiner. “It’s always tough to beat West Linn at their place. [This win was] was huge. It sets the tone for the rest of league.”

It was the first game of the Three Rivers League season for both Clackamas and West Linn. The Cavaliers improved to 12-3 on the season with the win; West Linn slipped to 11-3 with the loss.

Clackamas hosts Lake Oswego (7-7, 0-1) this Friday and the Cavaliers play Oregon City (9-5, 1-0) on the road next Tuesday. The Pioneers, ranked eighth in the OSAA power rankings, hammered Lakeridge 87-23 last Friday.

“I expect [the Oregon City game] to be a really good game,” said Lane. “I’m excited! Two really good teams playing before a big crowd in a great atmosphere. It should be a lot of fun. But Lake Oswego first.”

The Cavaliers turned in an impressive showing on Jan. 14 as they knocked off Beaverton 48-30.

It was the lowest scoring game of the season for the Beavers, who entered the contest ranked fourth in the state in the OSAA coaches poll. It was Beaverton’s second loss to Clackamas, which won 69-51 in a Dec. 6 tournament at Southridge. The Beavers had averaged 56 points in 11 previous games.

“Our defense was really good, half-court and full-court,” said Lane. “We slowed down their transition game.”

The Beavers made only 24 percent of their shots from the field.

The Cavaliers also dominated the backboards, with Sydney Azorr (9 rebounds), leading her squad to a 35-17 advantage on the glass.

Azorr played a strong game all around, scoring a game-high 15 points — with two 3-point baskets, and making three assists. Erica Pagano had 13 points and five rebounds.

Coach Lane also praised Azorr for her defensive play: “Sydney did a great job on Danielle Hartzog.”

Hartzog and Alyssa Christiansen tied for Beaverton team-high honors, each with nine points.

The Cavaliers were in command all the way, building a 13-8 advantage in the first quarter and a 25-14 lead by the halftime break.