OGUNQUIT — Just a few feet from real orange cones and a torn-up Route 1 that’s been undergoing repairs since March, there’s a ghoulish Halloween display with skeletons operating backhoes and the famous Ogunquit trolley careening into an enormous hole. A skull and crossbones on an orange road sign warns: “Road workers dead ahead.”

It’s meant to poke fun at the 2.3-mile-long, $13.5 million road work project that’s famously disrupted the main stretch of Ogunquit, which teems with tourists during the summer season. But at least one person emailed a local television station to say it was in poor taste and offensive to state Department of Transportation workers.

The notion amused a group of six DOT workers who were winding up a day’s work late Thursday. They laughed and shook their heads at the idea the display was aimed at them.

“I think it’s perfectly fine,” said Mike Gowen, a laborer on the job site, as his colleagues nodded. “I thought it was pretty funny.”

The elaborate Halloween display, with its moving backhoe, lights, coffin and a half-dozen characters, is on a grassy area fronting Route 1 at the entrance of Littlefield Village. The group of 137 neat, white cottages closed for the season Monday, but it was residents in the village who put up the display last Saturday, according to owner Ginger Littlefield.

“It is all done in good fun,” Littlefield said. “It’s Halloween.”

A sign next to a zombie decked out in an orange safety vest and a bright yellow hardhat says the site is “DOT (Disrupt Ogunquit Traffic) Project # 019106.”

Littlefield said she was surprised anyone thought it was in poor taste. The residents at the village, she said, have put up big Halloween displays on the lawn for the past five or six years as the season ends, then come back after Halloween to take them down.

Most people stopping by have liked the display, she said.

“I love it,” said Jana Whitten, an Alfred resident who drove over to see the display and take some pictures. “I think it’s funny.”

Whitten said the road construction is a well-known headache in the area, enough so that she avoided coming into Ogunquit over the summer.

As she spoke, a large construction truck drove by, its driver honking the horn a few times and waving.

The town’s two-year-long road project is inescapable, with large sections of road roped off with tape and lined with orange cones. Gravel-pocked dirt walkways line the road. In addition to redoing the road itself, the project includes two new bridges, sewer-line upgrades, rebuilt sidewalks and adding new lighting and landscaping.

Just this month, the Ogunquit town manager told the Select Board that these would be “the toughest few months” of the project and that many businesses have incurred “a significant loss of revenue” because of it.

State officials said they expect to finish by December 2016.

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