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“I will not be attending the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner this year. Please wish everyone well and have a great evening!” the president tweeted Saturday evening.
The annual event, set for April 29 at the Washington Hilton, is a black-tie scholarship dinner hosted by the White House Correspondents’ Association and is attended by journalists, politicians and other Washington movers and shakers.
The event has drawn fire in recent years from critics who say it has become too much of a celebrity fest and that journalists should not be cozying up to the people they cover.
The sitting president and first lady traditionally have attended the dinner, along with a high-profile celebrity who acts as host.
Trump's decision to skip the dinner comes amid his ongoing feud with the media, which he has described as "the enemy of the American people."
This year’s dinner will go on as planned despite Trump’s absence, said Jeff Mason, the correspondents’ association’s president.
“The WHCA takes note of President Donald Trump's announcement on Twitter that he does not plan to attend the dinner, which has been and will continue to be a celebration of the First Amendment and the important role played by an independent news media in a healthy republic,” Mason said in a statement.
“We look forward to shining a spotlight at the dinner on some of the best political journalism of the past year and recognizing the promising students who represent the next generation of our profession."
Trump has attended the dinner on at least two other occasions — in 2011 and in 2015.
In 2011, a stone-faced Trump sat silently in the audience as President Obama and comedian Seth Meyers ridiculed him from the stage, mocking his performance on Celebrity Apprentice and his embracing of the so-called "birther" movement

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