Well, the sweetener in Pixy Stix explains why people call it "pageant crack." It hits the kids' systems sooner and they expend all that sugar energy on stage!
I always liked Pixy Stix because I liked their tartness. I do remember putting the powder in water and drinking it, too. They were very popular in lunchboxes, and the fortunate one who had Pixy Stix could usually make some pretty decent lunch trades.