Starts Friday: Long winters bring out the best in artists; think about all those chilly nights with nothing to do but cuddle up to a warm kiln, a sassy canvas or a steamy camera. As rumors of spring whisper through the bare trees and swirl around the lofts of Lowertown, artists are sweeping their studios in preparation for another of their semiannual Art Crawls. As usual, about 300 studios in 30 buildings will be open this weekend, most concentrated in Lowertown but some in the Selby-Dale neighborhood and others in the Midway and on the western end of University Avenue. Items for show and sale range from paintings and photos to jewelry, pottery and faerie-garden furnishings. Heads up, baseball fans; the St. Paul Saints are honoring the late Andy Nelson, who produced programs, ads and memorabilia for the team from 1992 until his untimely death in 2008 at age 52. Nelson’s endearing murals (including the sample shown here) decorate Midway Stadium. A sample of his work will be on view in the lobby of Lowertown Lofts, 240 E. 5th St., St. Paul. (6-10 p.m. Fri.; noon-8 p.m. Sat.; noon-5 p.m. Sun.