Rent it out to someone to farm. Until the economy gets back on it's feet and the milk and cheese prices return to profitable levels hay isn't selling for much of a profit if at all. 2007 we had a drought and I sold all the hay i had. In 2008 it was wet and I had a bumper crop, unfortunately so did everyone else. Add to that the fact that a lot of horses went bye bye when prices went so high the hay market has really shrunk around here. Lots of cheap hay this year. I wont even go into the fertilizer situation.
Do your best to keep your land. God only made so much of it. The price will just go up to replace it later on.
I would love to rent it out but not many takers. I've planted a couple dozen fruit trees, brambles, veges etc...you know, self reliance amounts. I heard that there is a grass seed that is being planted for bio-diesel. Would 80 acres bring any income? I live really simply, I cashier at a local Wal-Mart, my kids homeschool, we don't need huge profits, just enough to supplement and live on...
I worked for a local grocery store chain here in Iowa until a few years ago. We would buy produce from several of the local farmers. One of whom would have his own produce as well as wholesale produce from other farmers in the area. He would pick it up from them and deliver to us and make some on every load. I think he raised an acre or two of his own vegetables. You could also plant cut flowers to sell to florists in the area.
If the amount you are asking is correct and land is worth that much where you live, I would not sell. How many cuttings can you get off of it. Go organic with your hay if you can. And it should bring two to three times more than other hay in your area. Sell it in small square bales to your local horse, or small animal producers in your area. Maybe some one in your area has milk goats and is looking for what you have. Just some other ideas. It's hard to help with out knowing your area and situation. Maybe try another crop, tomatoes, lettuce etc....Flowers, there has to be a way for you to keep it. Try renting it out till you find something that works for you. Perhaps do it on shares, this way you get some of the crop off it also. Check with your local USDA office... Natural Resource Conservation Service and FSA , Farm Service Agency. Ours has a program called EQIP, it's a cost share program. Also, check if you have a up coming sign up for CRP, in your area. Crop Reserve Program, this will give you payments to keep it in grass and not farm it for so many years if your land qualifies. They may have other programs that are unique to your area.
Have you looked into grants, there are many rural area development grants that the government has, you might want to contact your area rep. . Alos I was wondering how many times you have to reseed your fields, I reseeded 6 years ago and still get high yeild, about 250 900lbs bales off of alittle less then 28 acres in only two cuttings. I sometimes take a third crop, but I try to leave it on the field to return organic material back into the soil. I hope you find a solution it would be a shame to see another small independant farmer go away.