PORT DOVER, ONT. -- Heavy rain and winds Friday prompted Environment Canada to issue special weather statements and warnings across southwestern Ontario.

The winds blowing off Lake Erie Friday built through the day, with many residents heading down to the shoreline to take a look and capture some photos.

“I like to take some pictures of it, and send it to my friends and show them how lucky we are,” explains Port Dover resident Corrine Petrochuk.

By midday the wind and waves were growing in strength, leaving David Tank, owner of Cocoa Cabana assessing the risk.

“It’s not, it’s probably going to, we’re going to have, geez now I say that and now I’m going to get flooded right, but it’s probably going to come up to the doors.”

While businesses had to decide whether to start applying anti-flood measures to their store fronts, Josh Benvenuti was out on the water, catching some waves while foil surfing.

“Everyone runs for cover when it’s like this, but these are the best days on the lake.”

That divide sums up how residents in Port Dover feel about the intense storms and surge that so often come to their doorstep,

“We have to accept it, we want to be here, I don’t ever want to leave,” says Tank, as this isn’t the first storm, or the last they will endure.

In past storms, high winds along Lake Erie have produced storm surges causing localized flooding in shoreline communities.

To the north of the lake in the London region, there was a risk of heavy rain Friday morning, followed by strong northwest winds gusting to 70 or 80 km/h throughout the afternoon that cause some small power outages.

In Elgin County a wind warning was issued for St. Thomas, Aylmer and eastern Elgin County, with wind gusts up 100 km/h near the eastern end of Lake Erie possible.

The same warning was also issued for Norfolk County and eastward.

Meanwhile in Northern Perth County four schools had to be closed due to a power outage: Listowel District Secondary School, Eastdale, St. Mary's Listowel and Elma Public School.

And online learning was cancelled for Listowel District Secondary School due to a lack of internet access for staff and students.

A downed power line east of Listowel caused by high winds contributed to the power outage.