That's up from 32,000 last year, a crowd that was already bursting the seams of the Qwest Center in downtown Omaha in what has become known as "Woodstock for Capitalists."
However this year there might be a little less Woodstock and a little more Wall Street.
Buffett, the world's second-richest person, is coming off a tough year for Berkshire, when its book value per share fell 9.6 percent in 2008, the biggest drop in Buffett's 44 years at the helm. And Berkshire's Class A shares closed lower on Friday, down nearly 40 percent from their peak of $151,650 in December 2007.
"I expect a more serious tone this year," says Bill Bergman, an equity analyst at Morningstar, who is attending the meeting. "Berkshire investors aren't used to a 40 percent decline in the market value of their shares."
In a departure from previous years, Berkshire will not release its first-quarter earnings report on the eve of the May 2 meeting, the company said on Wednesday.
Instread, the company will announce them May 8. CNBC will have ongoing coverage of Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting on TV and on CNBC.com.
For more visit CNBC's Warren Buffett Watch by clicking here.
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Trader disclosure: On May 1st, 2009, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Adami Owns (AGU), (C), (GS), (INTC), (MSFT), (NUE), (BTU); Seymour Owns (AAPL), (BAC), (EEM), (FXI), (PBR), (DRYS); Finerman Owns (MA); Finerman's Firm Owns (AXP), (PBR), (RIG), (UNH), (TBT), (KFN), (ADP), (XPI), (IBB), (CSCO); Finerman's Firm And Finerman Own (TBT); Finerman's Firm Owns (BAC) Preferred; (C) Preferred; Finerman's Firm Owns (MSFT) & (MSFT) Put Spread; Finermans Firm Is Short (IJR), (MDY), (SPY), (IWM), (USO); Terranova Owns (IBM), (MS), (BP), (XOM), (HES), (X)
Terranova Owns (DIS) Calls; Terranova Owns (JPM) & (JPM) Calls; Terranova Owns (JOYG) & (JOYG) Calls; Terranova Owns (INTC) & (INTC) Calls; Terranova Owns (BRCM) & (BRCM) Calls; Terranova Owns (WYNN) And Is Short (WYNN) Calls
Terranova Works For (VRTS); Terranova Is Chief Alternatives Strategist Of Virtus Investment Partners, Ltd.; Terranova Is Co-Portfolio Manager Of The Virtus Diversifier PHOLIO
Virtus Diversifier PHOLIO Owns (IGE), (DBC), (DBV)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (ABD),(ARE), (CAL), (DLR), (EPR), (EXR), (IGE), (MEE), (DBC), (DBV), (DBA), (SKT), (UA), (CLB), (WBMD); Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of St Mary Land & Exploration Co; Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of Seagate Tax Refund Rights; Terranova Owns June Crude Oil And Is Short September Crude Oil
CNBC.com with wires