EAST WHITELAND - Township resident Marylyn Calabrese surveyed her quiet little street Friday. "This is more excitement than we're ever used to having," she said.
Calabrese was scanning the crowd of 20 or so media members who had gathered on Madeline Drive outside the home of her neighbors.
Local print and television media, a CNN camera crew, an NBC crew, a New York Times reporter and two reporters that are employed by an agency that works for The (London) Sun had staked out the house.
Calabrese seemed more fascinated with the media attention than with the possibility that the family's daughter reportedly had a relationship with Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry.
"The story here is the story behind the story," said Calabrese, who has lived in the neighborhood outside of Malvern for 11 years.
She said she had received telephone calls from reporters at the Los Angeles Times and a Washington, D.C., paper - she could not recall the name - the night before.
East Whiteland Police Sgt. James Smith sat in a police vehicle, along with a line of cars and vans, across the street from the pale green and stone ranch house. Later in the afternoon, two East Whiteland patrol cars also circled the neighborhood.
Smith said he was there to make sure the media behaved.
"We're just monitoring the situation," he said.
A story broke Thursday on an Internet site that the Massachusetts senator may have had a two-year relationship with a 24-year-old East Whiteland woman.
The Drudge Report was the site that first broke the news about Monica Lewinsky's stained dress during Bill Clinton's presidency, although numerous other postings on that site have failed to be confirmed by any members of the mass media.
The Democratic front-runner made his campaign rounds Friday while repeatedly denying having had an extramarital affair. "I just deny it categorically. It's rumor. It's untrue. And that's the last time I intend to" respond to questions about it, he told reporters who asked about reports on an Internet site, reported the Associated Press.
Several Internet sites of mainstream American newspapers posted stories about the allegations.
According to The Sun, there is no evidence of an affair between the two.
However, The Sun reported, the woman's parents said Kerry invited their daughter to Washington and asked her to work for his re-election campaign two or three years ago. She declined, they said.
According to The Sun, the young woman is a journalist who is currently in Kenya.
At least one member of the East Whiteland household was at home Friday.
A young man driving a burgundy Nissan Sentra pulled into the driveway of the home mid-afternoon.
"Would you please get off my property?" he asked reporters, who continued to stand on the street, as he unlocked the front door of the home. "Thank you."
He later came out to retrieve the mail from the roadside mailbox, and the crowd of reporters surged forward.
"I'm not saying anything," he said, looking over his shoulder. "Have a good day, guys."
Missy Keehn Ritti of Pottstown, a former intern for Kerry, was skeptical of the allegations.
"Obviously, it is impossible for me to say," she said in a telephone interview. She is a former Daily Local News reporter.
However, she said, during her tenure in Kerry's office, he acted professionally and gave no indication that he would become involved in an extra-marital affair.
Kerry has been married to Teresa Heinz, widow of Pennsylvania GOP Sen. John Heinz, since 1995. He divorced his first wife in 1988.
Daily Local News reporter Jessica M. McRorie, who interned with the East Whiteland woman at ABC News in Manhattan in 2001, also questioned the reports.
"When I heard the news ... I kind of laughed to myself because I know this person," she said. "And it just doesn't seem logical.
"But then my immediate reaction after that was how hard it must be for her now ... to just try to keep sane because there's going to be a media circus in this because John Kerry's big in the news."
In the more than two years since she has known her, McRorie said she never heard her friend mention Kerry.
"As a member of the media, I know we jump on certain topics," she said. "And this really hits home."
McRorie, who still keeps in touch with her friend, heard from her about six months ago.
"The last time I talked to her she'd sent me an e-mail from Israel where she was honeymooning," she said.
McRorie said her friend is a hard worker. She is a former Associated Press reporter who put in long hours as a reporter, McRorie said.
"She's one of the brightest and strongest people I know," said McRorie. "And I'd hate to see this happen to someone if it turned out not to be true."
Adam Cirucci contributed to this story.