And the Juno Awards go to . . . Winnipeg

It's now official — the Juno Awards are coming to Winnipeg in 2014.
Feist performs at the 2012 Juno Awards in Ottawa, on April 1. (CARAS/iPhoto)

It's now official — the Juno Awards are coming to Winnipeg in 2014.

The news trickled out Wednesday afternoon but on Thursday, a formal announcement was made that Winnipeg will host the 43rd Juno Awards and the Juno week celebrations from March 24 to 30, 2014.

The awards gala, to be held March 30, 2014, was last hosted by the city in 2005.

"Winnipeg has cultivated artists that have become part of our national identity — from Neil Young and The Guess Who to Chantal Kreviazuk and Lenny Breau.  Winnipeg's enthusiastic music fans have helped launch numerous rock 'n' roll legends, and we're excited for what's in store when we return in 2014," said Melanie Berry, president and CEO of the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS).

More than 5,000 event-related visitors are expected to be in the city during Juno week, the week leading up to the gala night.

The full week of activity is expected to result in a $10 million dollar boost to the local economy.

"As a former music promoter, I’ve been able to see first-hand what an important role music plays in so many people’s lives," said Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz.

"If our experience hosting the Junos in 2005 is any indication, Winnipeggers will throw their support behind all the Juno week events leading up to the red carpet and the award ceremony."

The Juno Awards history dates back to 1970 when the inaugural Gold Leaf Awards were held in Toronto as an industry awards event.

In 1971, it became recognized as the Juno Awards in honour of Pierre Juneau, the first chairman of the Canadian Radio-Television Commission (CRTC).

Today, the awards have evolved from a one-day event to a weeklong celebration featuring events that attract thousands of music fans from across the country and abroad.

The 2013 event will be held in Regina from April 15 to 21.