Country music fans need to mark their calendars for November 9, since that's when the 2011 CMA Awards are set to air. The Country Music Association announced that the 45th Annual CMAs will air on Wednesday, Nov. 9 at 8PM ET on ABC, live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Has it really been 45 years of the CMAs already? Here's to 45 more years of celebrating country's finest.

The CMA Awards ceremony is one of the most highly anticipated events on the country music genre's calendar each year. It's an evening dedicated to honoring and paying respect to the ever-popular genre's performers, songwriters, record producers, musicians and music video directors.

Last year's CMAs, hosted by Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, pulled in impressive ratings and was the No. 1 entertainment show of the week among adults in the 18-49 demo. No word as to who will host this year's festivities, but we're going to say hey, if it ain't broke, why fix it, since the Underwood/Paisley pairing worked so well and helped generate some of the show's best ratings ever!

If you'd like to know the inner workings of the CMAs and how your favorite country stars earn their awards, here's a brief breakdown: The CMA Awards nominees and winners are determined by the 6,000 industry professional members of the CMA, which was the first trade organization formed to promote an individual genre of music in 1958. Winners of the 45th annual CMA Awards are determined in a final round of voting by eligible voting members of the Country Music Association.

The eligibility period for the 2011 CMA Awards is July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011, and all voting for the 45th Annual CMA Awards will be conducted online. The first ballot and instructions are emailed June 27 to CMA members in good standing who are eligible to vote. Voting for the first ballot closes at 5:00 PM/CT on July 13.

The second ballot will be emailed to CMA members on August 9. Voting for the second ballot closes at 5:00 PM/CT on August 23. The final nominees in each of the 12 categories will be announced in early September.

The third and final ballot will be emailed to CMA members on October 14. Voting for the CMA Awards final ballot ends at 5:00 PM/CT on November 1.

So don't forget to mark your calendars for Nov. 9, so you can enjoy some CMAs fun.

Watch Last Year's Carrie Underwood/Brad Paisley CMAs Promo Spot