This two-wave panel study was designed to investigate the effects of the media coverage leading up to and including an important European Union event (a summit meeting of EU leaders) on citizens’ attitudes towards the EU and European integration. A random sample of 817 citizens in the Netherlands was surveyed one month before the Amsterdam Summit in June 1997 and three days after it had ended. Two types of attitudes towards Europe were distinguished by scaling analysis: (a) national–pragmatic attitudes towards the EU and (b) supranational–idealistic attitudes towards the EU. Results indicated that supranational–idealistic attitudes were influenced positively as a result of the media coverage related to the summit, whereas national–pragmatic attitudes did not show a significant change. A control variable, attitudes towards immigrants, which was included to detect possible testing effects, showed no change. Effects of the summit’s media coverage were in the same direction across all levels of political knowledge and political attentiveness. When predicting change in supranational–idealistic attitudes, controlling for the original attitude and political knowledge, those who were most attentive to politics were more strongly influenced. These findings challenge traditional views of the impact of knowledge, attention and interest on attitude change.