White House Correspondents’ Dinner plans post-coronavirus gala in August

A crowd of hundreds of Washington journalists and guests will pack a ballroom at the Washington Hilton in August for an expected post-coronavirus return of the White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

The annual black-tie gathering usually happens in April but was postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, which has infected nearly 600,000 US residents and killed more than 23,000.

The decision to book an August date comes as debate rages about whether to cancel other summer events — including the Democratic National Convention, set to begin Aug. 17 in Milwaukee, Wis. — for fear of circulating the virus.

The White House Correspondents’ Association said: “After consulting with public health and medical officials, the WHCA looks forward to honoring the first amendment and the important work of the journalists at our annual dinner on Saturday, August 29, 2020.”

“For most of us, the COVID-19 pandemic has been the most important story of our lifetimes,” association president Jonathan Karl said in a statement.  “We hope our rescheduled 2020 dinner will be a chance to celebrate the kind the important journalism we have seen throughout this crisis.”

Journalists, ad execs and officials will enjoy cocktail hour and a fancy meal in $350 per person seats as they are entertained by “Saturday Night Live” star Kenan Thompson and Netflix comedian Hasan Minhaj.

President Trump boycotted the glitzy dinner during his first three years in office. Each year, he’s hosted a political rally instead, stealing the spotlight.

Last year, Trump ordered all administration staff not to attend, creating a last-minute scramble to fill seats.

Under President Barack Obama, the dinner routinely attracted Hollywood A-listers and was accused of casting an unflattering light on cozy relations between officials and reporters.

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