When Yorkshire last played here on August 3 - or rather didn’t play here given that the One-Day Cup match against Lancashire was abandoned due to rain - a washing line had to be erected on the square to hang up towels that were used to dry the pitch.
On Sunday, the only towels in sight were those on the nearby seafront on which people were draped to catch the last rays of summer.
Inside the ground, a clear blue sky looked down on a crowd of 2,323 on the opening day of the 137th festival, the weather mocking the decision to have no Championship cricket in August to accommodate the Hundred.
For Yorkshire, who only have pride to play for after points deductions ended their promotion hopes, the weather was somewhat more favourable than the scorecard.
Inserted on a pitch that is not quite as firm as it usually is at Scarborough, given the inclement weather of late, they were bowled out for 297 in 76.5 overs, a competitive effort, for sure, but no more than that.
Eight batsmen reached double figures but only one, James Wharton, passed fifty, the 22-year-old making a first-class best 58 before falling to the medium-pace of Anuj Dal, who ripped out five of the top seven to finish with 5-72, his third-best figures.
Derbyshire reached 47-1 in reply, nicely placed on a surface expected to improve.
"We lost wickets in clumps and it stunted us really,” said top-scorer Wharton. "It was a good pitch – it’s slow – and when you get in you need to cash in and execute better.
"We’ve still got a lot of runs on the board and they’ve still got to go and get them. Personally, I felt good out; it was nice to get a few, but I should have got more.”
This is the first Championship meeting between these sides at Scarborough since 1991.
Back then, Yorkshire had the better of a drawn game in which David Byas scored a hundred for the hosts and Tim O’Gorman, chair of the Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC) which imposed the recent points penalty on Yorkshire, bagged a pair for the visitors – “serves him right”, as the soothsayers in the crowd no doubt whispered at the time.
Some of them were perhaps in their favoured seats yesterday, following an essential breakfast at the North Bay Cafe, when Adam Lyth and Fin Bean walked out to open the Yorkshire innings.
They would have seen the left-handers make a steady start, their partnership worth 59 with few alarms when Lyth was trapped lbw by Dal in the 20th over.
Moments earlier, the man who gave that decision, Ant Harris, a 49-year-old South African umpiring his first first-class match, provided a touch of levity when he toppled over trying to avoid a straight drive by Bean.
The incident was rendered more comical by the fact that the ball appeared to be nowhere near Harris, who staggered backwards and eventually keeled over as many have done here, in fairness, over the years. Things can only get better, as the saying goes...
They certainly got better for Derbyshire, who added the wicket of Shan Masood before lunch, the Yorkshire captain failing against his former club when he tried to play a forcing shot outside off stump and was caught behind. It became 98-3 to the sixth ball after the break when Bean, having played promisingly for 41, was another lbw victim for Dal.
Wharton and Hill lifted the score to 129, at which point Wharton nibbled at one and was caught behind.
The right-hander had reached his second first-class fifty from 102 balls with eight boundaries, including a memorably crisp pull of Sam Conners, and added 71 in a fine stand with Jonny Tattersall before he was the first of three players to fall in almost identical manner to Dal. Wharton, Matty Revis and Tattersall were all caught behind driving outside the off stump as Yorkshire slipped to 213-7.
Dal, the vice-chair of the Professional Cricketers’ Association, who might be familiar to readers as having been among those who faced Julian Knight MP and his cronies at the DCMS select committee, used the conditions well.
Some useful long-handle from Matty Fisher and Jordan Thompson got Yorkshire to within a whisker of 300 and a second batting point, the pair enjoying themselves as boundaries flew this way and that in the late afternoon.
After Dom Bess was spectacularly caught at point by a flying Mitchell Wagstaff, Thompson skied Alex Thomson to Dal at mid-off before Ben Coad was last out swinging at George Scrimshaw, who finished with three wickets.
Derbyshire had yet to score a run when Tattersall took a magnificent one-handed catch behind the stumps, flying to his left, to send back Harry Came off Coad. More inspiration will be needed on day two.