Bridge Street in Port Stanley, Ont. has been transformed into Matheson, Massachusetts this week as a popular Netflix series begins filming in the beach town.
Season two of the popular horror-drama series ‘Locke and Key’ will be filming in the Elgin County village from Wednesday to Friday.
Some businesses have seen their facades overhauled as fictional stores set in New England.
"They came in and put up a board and batten, and screwed it into place," says Charlie Roloson, an insurance broker with Hamilton, Ward and Cathers Insurance on Bridge Street.
They have taken his building and re-modeled it as 'Bluewater Real Estate'.
"The way they've come in has been a bit of a whirlwind. In two days they've been able to re-name a bunch of the buildings and we've enjoyed watching it."
The show is a story of a woman and her three children who from Seattle to Matheson after her husband is murdered. They take over a family home named Keyhouse.
The children soon discover a number of mysterious keys throughout the house that can be used to unlock various doors in magical ways.
"Elgin County, and Port Stanley specifically, has become quite the hotspot for filming over the years," said Alan Smith, general manager of Economic Development for the County of Elgin.
"The economic spinoff from the filming industry is terrific for our local business community," said Smith.
Elgin County has seen multiple major productions over the past four years. 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark', along with 'The Boys' and 'See' were all filmed at the former psychiatric hospital. NBC pilot 'Taken' was shot in Port Stanley in 2016.
"It's word of mouth now," says Smith.
"As soon as one company comes, word spreads in their community. We did a little advertising up front and it has paid off in the long-run."
Many of the storefronts have different names for the next few days including the C.A Bell Medical Centre which is now doubling as the 'U.S. Post Office'.
"I have some experience with this as I worked in British Columbia where they film a lot of movies," says Dr. Joel Keenleyside, a family physician at the medical centre.
"Sidney BC, is like Port Stanley. They come in and transform the wharf and everything and it's great fun to see it. Obviously this is a great place to do it, and people will recognize Port and know where we are."
When he heard they were coming, Roloson went and watched the series.
"When I watched it, I enjoyed it, says Roloson. "Season one was done in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia and I've been there so it was neat to see. It'll be interesting to see Port Stanley in the new series."
Maine Street Productions has crews in the village and there will be some traffic disruptions over the next three days.
Colborne Street between Matilda Street and Charlotte Street will be affected Wednesday and Thursday from 7:30 p.m. to 5 a.m.
Bridge Street will be fully closed between Colborne Street and Colonel Bostwick Street Thursday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Production will wrap up Friday in Port Stanley, and filming for season two of the show should be completed in March 2021.