Trump, first lady light National Christmas Tree

Trump, first lady light National Christmas Tree
© Getty Images

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump steps up attacks on McCain White House announces spring garden tour dates Trump heard sermon on calling out hate speech at St. Patrick's day church service MORE lit the National Christmas Tree on Wednesday, marking the holiday season with the annual tradition outside the White House.

The president briefly appeared on stage at the event, where he wished attendees a merry Christmas.

"Merry Christmas, everybody," the president told the crowd. "We just have to say it all together, merry, merry Christmas."


Trump began a countdown from 10, at the end of which the first lady hit a button to light the tree. The two exited the stage and returned to their seats in the front row.

The official lighting was sandwiched between an array of musical performances, mostly of classic holiday songs.

Others in attendance included Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpOn The Money: Liberal groups pressure Dems over Trump's tax returns | Top Trump economist says tax cuts powering economy | Trump Jr. slams Theresa May over Brexit delay | Watchdog warns of 'rosy' assumptions in Trump budget Trump Jr. slams Brexit delay: 'Theresa May should have taken my father's advice' The Hill's Morning Report - Dems contemplate big election and court reforms MORE and his girlfriend, former Fox News personality Kimberly Guilfoyle, as well the president's daughters, Lara Trump and Tiffany Trump.

Members of the press pool — a group of reporters assigned to remain with the president and document his activities — indicated shortly after 6:30 p.m. that Trump had returned to the White House without any staffers notifying the media.

Olivier Knox, the White House Correspondents' Association (WHCA) president, later said he looked into the situation, and concluded the incident was the result of a "logistical glitch."

Trump shared a photo of the tree on Twitter.

"On behalf of @FLOTUS Melania and the entire Trump family, I want to wish you all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!" Trump wrote. "May this Christmas Season bring peace to your hearts, warmth to your homes, cheer to your spirits and JOY TO THE WORLD!"

Melania Trump earlier this week unveiled the holiday decorations inside the White House for this year's season with a theme of "American Treasures."

Updated at 9:45 p.m.