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Tips on BRK AGM


HeresyValue
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Get there at 5:30am if you want your choice of seats.  In my opinion, the best seats are not on the floor but are located stage right.  If you show up at 5:30, you will have plenty of time to talk to seasoned meeting-goers who will be waiting there with you about where to go, what to do, what to expect.  Expect to run when the doors open.

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When I went a few years ago, there were two lines to get into the arena.  One was near the convention hall (exhibit hall) portion of the arena and close to the parking lot and the second was an entrance directly into the arena at the intersection of Capitol Ave and N. 10th Street.  Oddly, the line by the convention hall had 10 times as many people even though it was further from the arena floor.  I'm assuming this was because people parked in the giant parking lot, saw the first line and got in it.

 

You don't have to park in the parking lot and there is plenty of free parking on the street right by the arena.  Park on Capitol Ave a block or so away and get in that line.  You'll beat 90% of the folks into the arena and get a much better seat.

 

Also, you don't need to arrive so early if you get in this line.  I arrived about 40 minutes before the doors opened and there were only a couple hundred people there at the time (in this shorter line).  Run in, put your coat over a chair and head down to the convention hall to check out the vendors and see Buffett up close.  He walks through there shortly after the doors open.  You probably won't be able to get too close, as he is mobbed with reporters and security folks, but you can see him from 10 to 20 feet.  Fun times.

 

Hope this isn't too late to help.

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Best case scenario you're going to sit 50 ft away from Buffett so in my view it's not worth getting there pre-dawn to get the best seat possible. I show up at 6:30 and grab a seat directly across the arena from the stage so I don't have to turn my head to look at them for 5 hours. It's not jam-packed in that area, and the view is absolutely fine.

 

In terms of getting nearby Buffett or Gates maybe my experience will be helpful. Last year at about 7:30 I walked to the convention center area. I saw Ndamukong Suh chilling with Kathy Ireland over at the newspaper toss and wandered over. Nobody was around. I was right next to the rope. 20 minutes later I had just enough room to breathe. Buffett and Gates were heading over. Suddenly I'm looking over the shoulder of the ceo of nfm. Buffett walks right up to him and asks for yesterday's numbers. (The man is obsessed with numbers). Anyway, I was close enough to see his eyes shifting across the page. If you want to get close and hear him crack a few jokes with Gates this is the route to go. (The bodyguards were saying no autographs btw)

 

As for lunch, the arena food is fine, but it's super basic and costs ~10 bucks if I remember correctly. There are several restaurants within walking distance, but of course make a reservation if you wanna take that route.

 

This is one event you would be absolutely insane not to be sociable at. Ask some basic questions to the people around you and chances are you're going to meet somebody worth remembering.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My first post!  I was at the Yellow Brker meeting on Friday and a nice guy from R.I. suggested this forum.  I'm glad he did and am surprised I hadn't come across it in the past.  Looks like a lot of great discussion. 

 

These tips are of course post-meeting, but for those who may be looking for ideas for next year, here's a few.  I've attended the meeting every year since 2007.  Attendance has gone up noticeably each year (especially this year).  I have personally found it more comfortable and easier to hear sitting in the ballrooms that stream the annual meeting onto big-screens.  I don't show up to the Century Link Center until about 7:10 or 7:15 when the line going into the building is gone.  It works out really well unless you're hell-bent on seeing Warren and Charlie in person (you can always venture into the arena after lunch when a lot of people have left and don't come back). 

 

Also, I should note that I don't even go find a seat until about 8am.  I go straight into the vendor area to see what's new.  Plus, as someone else commented, Buffett always walks around a bit so there's a good opportunity to see him close up.  In years past I've had him 4 feet from me.  But, he's always being surrounded by a mob of media and shareholders trying to get pictures so have that expectation.

 

As far as hotels go, I haven't had much luck finding a decent one for a fair price.  All the hotels in the city jack their prices up 2-4 times for the shareholder weekend.  Next year I plan on taking Warren's advice and look into AirB&B. 

 

 

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Thanks for the tips everyone. Unfortunately I didn't check this until now, too tired to manage anyways.

 

A lot of the tips are pretty spot on, especially in terms of the entrances and free parking. Though I parked in the covered garage which made it easy to access the vehicle during the day since it's directly below the main entrance. It's also surprisingly easy to get in and out given the size of the event IF you stick around for the actual AGM portion of the event, which most people skip and make a mad-dash to escape.

 

The line essentially dissapears by 7AM but I presume if you don't arrive before 6AM you won't be getting the 'prime' seats on the floor, best of the angled sides, and some of the back seats opposite the stage which are the best for long-term viewing IMO. There were apparently sizable numbers of people lining up from 3AM, the most hardcore of which (maybe a dozen or so since midnight) brought disposable gear they left at the doors as they dashed in.

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