Tino Roncone takes over Cloud 9

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A game of musical chairs between PR flacks continues to change the landscape of Cleveland's nightlife. Just days after the abrupt and unexpected firing of marketing manager Marcus Sims at the View, his Velvet Dog counterpart, Tino Roncone, has dropped this grenade: He's resigned from the trendy nightspot to buy into Cloud 9. "The only thing constant is change," says a snickering Roncone. Why now? After five years of trumpeting the Dog's vibrancy in the Warehouse District, Roncone has managed to orchestrate a steady string of edgy, upscale events for twentysomething nightowls. A recent "Best Underwear Contest" spoke for itself. It's time to move on, he says. "The space (at Cloud 9) is practically brand new, tastefully put together, and has arguably the best sound system in Cleveland. It's the exact reason we decided to purchase it," says Roncone. "And did I mention the space is fabulous?" Just don't expect any huge changes at the club anytime soon. The owners will be conducting a "test" for the next 30 days to see whether to continue Cloud 9 as is or to shut it down and renovate it. "We want to see whether the brand has legs in Cleveland," Roncone explains. -- Cris Glaser & Rebecca Meiser

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