A nativity scene with a zombie theme makeover is causing quite a controversy. Jasen Dixon, of Sycamore Township, Ohio, has a lot of his neighbors crying foul with his front yard display of a nativity scene done in a very different style.

In place of baby Jesus, Dixon places a miniature zombie. The backdrop is also given a ghoulish ambiance with the presence of skeletal grim reapers. The scene really comes to life at night as the figures are illuminated and resembles more of a Halloween decoration than a Christmas one.

For Dixon, it is definitely not his intent to offend anyone. He actually owns a haunted house attraction called 13 Rooms of Doom and decided to get creative this year by using his props for the nativity scene.

In an interview, Dixon says that he’s already received a number of complaints from neighbors. He also says that roughly 30 to 40 motorists stop outside his house every day to snap pictures and film it on their mobile phones.

The zombie nativity scene has also raised the eyebrows of Sycamore Township officials who are now threatening legal action if the decorations aren’t taken down. According to city officials, the structure is violating zoning laws by encompassing more than 35% of the property.

Greg Bickford, a Township administrator, insists that the zombies are fine and that the issue is squarely with the size of the structure.

Dixon, however, doesn’t buy the explanation and explained that he has never been cited before despite being a 15-year resident. He is also convinced that no actions would have been taken against him had it been a traditional nativity scene. Officials want the structure removed from the lawn by Dec 26. Dixon, though, has no intention of doing so. It is uncertain at this point what legal actions would be taken against him if the scene remains on the lawn after that date.

[photo credit: Riccardo Palazzani]