6 hours max puts stowe out of the running... Whiteface is 2hr closer and has plenty variety for a weekend... and has lots of variety for off the hill activities. The only compromise is the ski-in ski-out... and that was only a "nice to have".
Oh yeah- he mentioned crowds... another area where Whiteface is king. What's Sugarbush like on weekends?
If can make it on a Whiteface Super Sunday, the discount on the lift ticket is pretty substantial. More or less the first Sunday of the month starting in Jan. The drive from town is pretty straightforward, even if there is a snowstorm. No need for 4WD.