Hi Spelunx and welcome to CS!
I purchased a Classic recently (and have repaired a few) and really think these are great little machines.
Can I ask if you are waiting for the ready light to extinguish (though some work the other way round), before pulling the 2nd round. I dont think theres a need to rinse the group handle in between, but a wipe out is a good idea.
As for affogatos - quite a few people here prepare this well in advance and refigerate the extractions to be enjoyed later. Maybe you could try this - prepping in the afternoon will give you more time with your guests. ;)